Jackson throws first pitch in front of former teams

Jackson throws first pitch in front of former teams

CHICAGO -- Bo Jackson played for both the Royals and the White Sox, so it was appropriate that the flamboyant slugger and football star threw out the ceremonial first pitch on Monday.

"I can bet anybody in here that my team is going to win this afternoon," Jackson kiddingly told reporters during the game. "My team is out on the field right now. I guarantee you my team is going to win."

It was 20 years ago, on April 9, 1993, that Jackson returned to the White Sox after undergoing surgery to receive an artificial hip and belted a home run in his first appearance, as a pinch-hitter against the Yankees' Neal Heaton.

"The only way that it feels like it's been 20 years is that out of both teams, I bet I don't know but about five players and I played for both teams," he said.

Although Jackson tossed the pitch at the White Sox invitation, he was outwardly neutral, wearing a plain black cap with no team emblem.

Jackson played outfield for the Royals and running back for the Raiders as he combined careers before sustaining a hip injury in football in 1991. He's remembered for his "Bo Knows" Nike ad campaign and his extraordinary feats are still shown on stadium video boards.

He's a candidate for the Royals Hall of Fame currently being voted on by an election committee.

Dick Kaegel is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.