A Blue Baller is one that is a member of a Kickball Team here in Nashville. The adult co-ed sports league that it operates under is called NSL (for Nashville Sports League), and the name might make you wonder about them. But you will NEVER meet a more athletic, diverse, talented, or hilarious group of people playing a sport that you’ll easily believe they are all too old to play.
This is our official Blue Baller Logo drafted by member and architect/creative genius Matt Noll.
Adult kickball? You’re thinking of 5th grade aren’t you? Maybe the gym class where back in the day it was perfectly acceptable to wear jean shorts while playing sports comes to mind. Instead try to imagine a team that just won it’s SIXTH consecutive season championship last night. When Bill first mentioned it to me that was certainly what I thought. He joining a team like this sounded weird, but it was early in our relationship. Who was I to judge?
Here is our latest Championship photo taken 5-29-13.
If you’d like a change of perspective on this juvenile-perceived activity… attend a game. Only then can you observe the dance music played from the dugout, the matching retro jerseys complete with nicknames for each player, the coolers of beer which get poured into blue plastic cups (red solo cups have no place with a team called the Blue Ballers). OH! And the scoreboard… be sure to take a look at the scoreboard. Then your 5th grade perceptions disappear. So join us, have a beverage, and be sure to bring a lawn chair. The only thing missing at the ball park is a set of bleachers.
OK so let me throw some bullet points at you to provide a sense of how exactly this magic happens.
- Games are Wednesday nights at a place called Whitfield Park here in Nashville, Tennessee
- Each calendar year, the Blue Ballers play 3 seasons:
- Spring (late March – May), Summer (June – early August), Fall (Mid-September – the end of October)
- The roster includes a lawyer, some teachers, nurse practitioners, financial analysts, sales geniuses, a woman with a PhD, and an interior designer… just to name a few. The roster diversity & jersey nicknames alone will have to be another blog entry one day.
The best part of this team is that they were created out of free agency! Back in the Spring of 2011 every single one of the people on this team joined just for something fun to do, and didn’t care what team they were a part of. In fact only 3 girls on the team knew each other at all when the season started.
My part in all of glory? I’m the DJ. DJ Kimmy Styles. Givin’ it to ya on the 1s and 2s. I also occasionally provide color-commentary on the games’ progressions, I deliver live tweeting (follow them @BlueballersKB), and I’m an excellent beer-pourer. I rode horses as a kid… I didn’t play sports. This job is the best contribution I can make. Aside from cheering for Bill of course.
Since its inception some players have left the team but usually due to things like giving birth to babies or moves to different cities in order to do things like get married or find a job with excellent pay. Others have joined in on what they thought would be just a season… and have yet to leave. The Blue Ballers are in a true definition – a team. They cheer, challenge, yell at, hug, dance for, drink with, and encourage each other both on and off the kickball field. They keep up on what is going on in each other’s lives through our after-game meals/drinks at a bar called M.L Rose.
I know it sounds ridiculous. From the outside it just looks like a silly sport with weekly games. But this group goes out honky-tonking together, they go to each other’s birthday parties, some of them are now dating, they watch basketball together, and they are always part of the guest list when one of them gets married. We even hold-going away celebrations when one has to leave, and the last time they did… there were tears. They started as free agents or strangers if you will. At the end of just one season, they were friends. And in what seemed like just a moment later… they were family.