A.J. Pierzynski jokes with president

Updated: May 24, 2011, 11:12 PM ET
By Doug Padilla | ESPNChicago.com

ARLINGTON, Texas -- A.J. Pierzynski can probably cross off Secret Service agent from his list of potential jobs once he retires from baseball.

[+] EnlargeA.J. Pierzynski
AP Photo/Matt StrasenWhite Sox catcher A.J. Pierzynski reaches behind the backstop to try to catch a foul ball near former President George W. Bush.

The Chicago White Sox catcher was unable to grab a foul ball in the first row Monday night that nearly hit former President George W. Bush and his wife, Laura.

In the sixth inning of the White Sox's game against the Texas Rangers, Pierzynski chased a foul ball off the bat of Adrian Beltre near the Rangers' on-deck circle.

The ball was just behind the screen, but Pierzynski was able to reach around it and in front of President Bush, who was going to make his own play on the ball at first but flinched at the last second.

The ball hit the ledge in front of the first row, though, and bounced into the seats.

"I just told him just because he was the president doesn't mean I won't jump on top of him," Pierzynski said. "Him and his wife got a good chuckle out of that one."

Pierzynski called it a light-hearted moment in an otherwise quick game. The Rangers won 4-0 in 2 hours and 5 minutes.

"Yeah, we obviously knew he was there," Pierzynski said. "When I saw that ball go up I actually thought I might have a chance just to catch it. I was like, 'Well I can reach around.' I needed about another foot.

"Then I realized I almost jumped in the former president's lap. It was funny. I had Nolan Ryan and George W. Bush sitting five feet from each other. At least I had a good landing spot if I were to go all the way over the wall."

Doug Padilla covers the White Sox for ESPNChicago.com and ESPN 1000.

Doug Padilla

Chicago White Sox beat reporter
Doug joined ESPN Chicago in July 2010 and covers the Chicago White Sox for ESPNChicago.com and ESPN Radio 1000.

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