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General Raymond A. Thomas III to throw ceremonial first pitch on Opening Day

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General Raymond A. Thomas III of MacDill Air Force Base

The Tampa Bay Rays will host the New York Yankees to kick off the 2017 season on Sunday, and throwing out the ceremonial first pitch will be Army Four Star General Raymond A. Thomas III.

General Thomas currently serves as the 11th Commander of U.S. Special Operations Command (USSOCOM), which is headquartered at MacDill Air Force Base in south Tampa.

Prior to assuming command of USSOCOM, Gen. Thomas served as Commander, Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC), Fort Bragg, N.C. General Thomas’ other assignments as a general officer include:

  • Associate Director for Military Affairs at the Central Intelligence Agency
  • Commanding General, NATO Special Operations Component Command – Afghanistan
  • Deputy Commanding General, JSOC
  • Deputy Director for Special Operations, The Joint Staff in the Pentagon
  • Assistant Division Commander, 1st Armor Division in Iraq
  • Assistant Commanding General, JSOC.

The Rays contest will lead off the 2017 Major League Baseball regular season, marking the second time the Rays have played in MLB’s regular season opener and the first time they have hosted such a game. The Rays and Yankees also opened the MLB season in Tokyo in 2004, which according to team notes, started at 6:14 a.m. EST.

Opening Day is currently scheduled for 1:10 p.m. EST on Sunday, and will be broadcast on both ESPN and the local Fox affiliate Sun Sports.