PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — Fans arrive early, as the players limber up. The threat of rain is not enough to keep them away from Pittsburgh’s newest band of heroes.
A further testament to the popularity of the Pittsburgh Pirates: Pedro Alvarez made the front page of the City Paper.
No, wait. That’s the fake Pedro.
Demetrius Thorn takes up his familiar seat along the third base line, accompanied by like-minded fans.
“He’s the spitting image,” said Michael Gurnsey, of Elmira, N.Y. “In fact, the first time I saw them put the camera on him in the crowd, I said, that’s Pedro.”
“All I want is runs. And no more 16 innings!” says Thorn Thursday afternoon from his seat in PNC Park.
He left that game 11 hours ago.
His resemblance to his favorite player draws attention.
Thorn: “I get asked for a lot of autographs for him.”
KDKA’s Dave Crawley: “Do you sign them?”
Thorn: “No, not at all. I tell them first, and then they go, ‘Ok, that’s fine. This ball’s going to be worth nothing now, but hey, you know.”
Crawley: “But you’re on TV now.”
Thorn: “Yeah, that’s true, maybe 10 cents or so.”
Initially, he contacted Pedro’s wife on Twitter.
“I told her the day I was going to do this,” said Thorn. “I was going to dress up like him. She was like, ‘Okay, that’s going to be funny.’ And then, it happened. He hit two home runs that game, and then she was like, ‘Can you do it again?’”
The South Side man attended every home game last year, including playoffs.
As for that front page spread, Thorn says his mom grabbed up a lot of copies as keepsakes.
Make it 25 cents for that autographed baseball!