Perhaps you’ve heard that Will Ferrell is going to hijack the Cactus League on Thursday. If you’re unfamiliar with the story, the actor and comedian will appear in five spring training games throughout Arizona, traveling to each spot via helicopter, playing once at each of the nine positions on the baseball field. During the tour, Ferrell will play for 10 different teams.
So what’s this all about? Ferrell’s whirlwind Cactus League stunt is working for a good cause, raising awareness and money for organizations dedicated to fighting cancer, such as Cancer for College and Stand Up To Cancer. Playing all nine positions is also intended as a tribute to Bert Campaneris, who appeared at all nine positions for the A’s during a game on Sept. 8, 1965.
Cameras will also follow Ferrell along his one-day baseball odyssey to record footage for a Funny or Die special that will run on HBO titled Ferrell Takes the Field. Fans can keep up on what’s going on through social media and provide updates themselves with the hashtag #FerrellTakesTheField.
But it’s surely not a coincidence that Ferrell also happens to have a new movie coming out soon. Get Hard, co-starring Kevin Hart, will hit theaters on March 27. Do you think that will get mentioned a few times on Thursday?
To promote Anchorman 2 in 2013, Ferrell made random appearances on local TV news broadcasts in character as Ron Burgundy. A year earlier, he threw out the first pitch at Wrigley Field and announced the Cubs starting lineup shortly before The Campaign was released. In 2010, the actor pitched in a minor league game, but that appearance was solely intended to raise money for Cancer for College. This past January, Ferrell showed up at a Lakers-Pelicans NBA game with Mark Wahlberg to film an on-court scene for his upcoming movie Daddy’s Girl.
Are these sorts of stunts from Ferrell becoming played out? Or are they just fun, benefiting a movie, charity and the sport hosting such promotions? MLB is getting a lot of publicity due to Ferrell today, and those spring training games are sure to draw more casual interest than they normally would. Besides, there’s enough space between these stunts to avoid overexposure.
Here is Ferrell’s itinerary for Thursday (all times Eastern), the games in which he’ll play and the ballparks hosting those exhibitions:
— 12:05 p.m.: Mariners at Athletics, HoHoKam Stadium
— 1:10 p.m.: Cubs at Angels, Tempe Diablo Stadium
— 2:10 p.m.: Reds at Diamondbacks, Salt River Fields at Talking Stick
— 4:05 p.m.: Giants at White Sox, Camelback Ranch
— 6:15 p.m.: Dodgers at Padres, Peoria Stadium
— Oakland Athletics (@Athletics) March 12, 2015
The Cubs-Angels and Dodgers-Padres games will be televised live on MLB Network. (The Mariners and A’s moved their gametime up to 12:05 to accommodate the MLB Network schedule.) No word on when Ferrell will enter those games, so you’ll either have to stay tuned in or keep an eye on Twitter for breaking updates. He’ll also pop in on MLB Network programming and MLB.com earlier in the day.