'Breaking Bad' stars Cranston, Paul coming to Isotopes Park - Albuquerque Journal

‘Breaking Bad’ stars Cranston, Paul coming to Isotopes Park

Aaron Paul (left) and Bryan Cranston pose in a publicity photo for their business venture. The two are making an appearance at Isotopes Park in late July. (Courtesy of the Albuquerque Isotopes)

Walter White and Jesse Pinkman are coming back to Albuquerque.

No, we don’t know yet if or when the two lead characters from the smash hit “Breaking Bad” will actually be making an appearance in the final six episodes of “Better Call Saul,” the wildly popular Albuquerque-based spinoff/prequel to Breaking Bad.

But the Journal can confirm Bryan Cranston and Aaron Paul – the actors who masterfully portrayed White and Pinkman – will be at Isotopes Park together on July 30 raising money for two New Mexico-based charities, visiting old friends they made through the years with the Albuquerque Isotopes and to promote their joint-venture Dos Hombres Mezcal – a drink that will be available to buy during Isotopes games starting in mid-July.

“Albuquerque was our creative home throughout the run of Breaking Bad, and will always have a warm place in my heart,” Cranston said in a news release the team plans to unveil Thursday morning.

“Now, Aaron and I thought we can do something to say thank you in the best way possible, by raising money for two very important charities that serve the ABQ community, while also having fun at the ballpark.”

In addition to throwing out the ceremonial first pitches at that night’s Isotopes game and singing “Take Me Out to the Ball Game” during the seventh-inning stretch, Cranston and Paul will also be hosting a silent auction of personally donated items, including those related to the show. Proceeds will benefit New Mexico Veterans Integration Centers and the Children’s Cancer Fund of New Mexico.

The silent auction will be exclusively on site at Isotopes Park, starting when gates open at 5:30 p.m. (the game starts at 6:35) and running through the final out of the fifth inning. Auction winners may also attend a private photo op with Cranston and Paul during the game.

Cranston, a huge baseball fan who was a regular at Isotopes games and who organized celebrity softball games twice at Isotopes Park during filming of the show, was who got the ball rolling on the upcoming Albuquerque appearance.

“Bryan reached out to me in April and said that they wanted to come back to Albuquerque to help promote their Mezcal brand, hopefully do it in conjunction with an Isotopes home game and to also be able to raise some money for charity,” Isotopes General Manager John Traub told the Journal on Wednesday. “And it was important to them also to have an opportunity to come back and have a final thank you and goodbye to the city of Albuquerque and really recognize the city and the community for the role that they’ve played in both of these shows.”

Breaking Bad’s origins in the Duke City stem from 2006 with filming beginning in 2007 and the first episode airing in 2008.

“ABQ … we see you,” Paul said in the release from the Isotopes. “Doing the math – the city has been the host to Breaking Bad and Better Call Saul for sixteen years! That is a long-term relationship.

“We were so grateful the city was an important part of the stories, because it was a character as well.”

The Breaking Bad/Better Call Saul worlds have often praised Albuquerque through the years — making the city not just a setting, but as Paul alluded the city was a character in both shows.

And their relationship specifically with the Isotopes has been well-documented as well, from team gear showing up in both shows to cast members being regulars at games at Isotopes Park.

While donning a shirt with his Saul Goodman character on it on the Aug. 6, 2016, Better Call Saul Night, Bob Odenkirk sang an admittedly “too high” pitched “Take Me Out to the Ball Game” and entertained fans throughout.

Odenkirk was quoted in the Journal ahead of that game as saying of Albuquerque, “There’s so much I love about Albuquerque, starting with the sky. When you say that to people in LA, they’re like, ‘What? We have sky.’ They have about one-tenth the sky they have in Albuquerque. There’s something about this place. …

“But nothing beats the spirit of the people of Albuquerque – the pride they have in their town and the love they have in their town.”.”

‘TOPES THURSDAY: vs. Sugar Land, 6:35 p.m., Isotopes Park, 610 AM/95.9 FM

PROBABLES: Space Cowboys RHP Hunter Brown (4-3, 2.66) vs. Isotopes RHP Riley Smith (2-2, 6.53)

WEDNESDAY: Fourteen hits and two more home runs for the red-hot Isotopes offense led the charge in an 11-3 win for the home team over Sugar Land. (Click here for the box score.)

The win was No. 8 in a row at Isotopes Park for the home team (six June 14-19 vs. Salt Lake and the first two of the current six-game home series with the Space Cowboys). And the home runs — one by Carlos Perez in the second inning and one by Jonathan Morales in the eighth — give the Isotopes 114 this season, tying them with the Memphis Red Birds for the most this season in all minor league baseball.

Albuquerque starter Jose Ureña allowed three earned runs on eight hits in six innings, and three relievers shut out the visitors over the final three frames.

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