Rich Dauer throws first pitch at Astros' home opener months after almost dying

Rich Dauer was back at Minute Maid Park in Houston on Monday, five months after an almost fatal health episode.

Rich Dauer throws first pitch at Astros' home opener months after almost dying

Rich Dauer throws first pitch at Astros' home opener months after almost dying

Dauer, the Astros' retired first base coach, suffered a subdural hematoma in a fall at home last November after returning from the World Series. He collapsed during the team's victory rally and needed emergency surgery at a Houston hospital to save his life. Days later, he had made a recovery that was "astonishing" to doctors.

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On Monday, an emotional Dauer threw a ceremonial first pitch to manager A.J. Hinch prior to the reigning champions' home opener vs. the Orioles. After Dauer tearfully embraced Hinch near the mound, Astros players and coaches, led by Carlos Correa, offered their own hugs and handshakes.



"If it wasn't for my wife and family, some amazing doctors and the grace of God, I wouldn't be here right now," Dauer told reporters prior to the ceremony.

Dauer, 65, played his entire major league career with the Orioles, from 1976 to 1985. Primarily a second baseman, he played in two World Series (1979 and 1983). He was a major league coach for 18 seasons with the Indians, Royals, Brewers, Rockies and Astros, and a minor league manager for three other seasons.

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