Let's keep growing Adult baseball

Grab your glove and go!

Landscapers. Bankers. Real estate brokers. Web designers. Electricians. Painters. Car salesmen. Firefighters. Hospital workers. Police officers. Disc jockeys. Students. Stay-at-home dads. Brew masters. Therapists. Uber drivers. The list goes on.....

Seemly unrelated, week after week, month after month and year after year, people from these walks of life, and more, come together for one common cause. Amateur adult baseball. 

In leagues across the country, and dotted around the world, fields host men (and, yes, women) who bring their bats and gloves to play their favorite past time. The reasons for playing are as diverse as the people playing. The love of the game. A way to get out of the house. A distraction from day to day life. A need to compete. To prove something to themselves. To encourage others. To recapture their youth. 

Whatever the reason, these players keep the game in their hearts and flock to the diamond. Adult baseball is alive and well. 

Find a league near you

Depending on where you live, you may have many choices of leagues to join. Or you may need to drive an hour or so to find a team. 

A league may have only one division. It may be broken into age divisions. Or it might be set up to match teams by competitive ability. 

There are teams that compete at a high level day in and day out. Others that are more focused on having a good time with teammates. Some teams are repeat league champions. Or looking for their first win. 

In the dugout are players who are playing their first organized game as an adult. Some haven't played since little league. Many hung it up after high school or college only to pick back up once they found out about a nearby league. You can even run across former pros, ballers who played independent ball or a decade in MLB. 

The local league may be affiliated with a large association such as MSBLNABA or Roy Hobbs baseball. Possibly it is city run or its own non profit entity. There are Official Baseball Rules (OBR), rules from the various governing bodies and still, other local league specific rules balancing fairness and creating the best experience possible for participants. 

Play Tournaments

Some of the best experiences an amateur adult baseball player can look forward to are the tournaments held across the country, especially the large, end of season tournaments put on by the larger baseball Associations, in places like Arizona or Florida. These games attract teams from across the country and around the world, to compete on spring training fields and other top notch baseball complexes. I think every adult player should participate at one of these events, at least once in their baseball journey. I've played in three of these tournaments and they are the highlight of my year. I count the days until the next one. 

Many people don't know about the opportunities that are out there to play baseball after the chances in youth expire.  Especially if one lives in a more rural area, the local league may not be very visible. If you want to play, I encourage you to ask around your community or check online to find a way to get on the field. I was ignorant to the fact baseball was so available to me up until a few years ago. I'm grateful I found it and try to spread the word, so others don't miss their chance. 

Bringing additional value to the game

One of the joys of discovery in adult baseball is meeting others with the same passion. Some of the events that they create offer baseball to others in meaningful ways. You will find them in communities all over. Many are on my playing wish list. Examples include, the Rippey Ruckus in Rippey, Iowa, dreamed up by Dave Hick and Bruce Thome, the NLBM Summer Classic, in Kansas City, put on by a collaboration of the Negro League Baseball museum, Boys & Girls Club of KC, the KC Royals urban youth academy and KB Productions and the Legends of Baseball tournament in Cooperstown, NY. 

Others connect people to the game in different ways. Kevin Lammerding and Al Garza give there take and perspective from guests over the airwaves with the Hawkast 1 podcast. Or on social media you can find a group dedicated specifically to adult players at Baseball Training for Older People 
(BT⚾️P), created by my friend and MSBL World Series teammate, Josh Nichols. 

Another testament to the growing excitement of adult baseball is the growth of leagues around the world, whether in Canada, Mexico, the Caribbean or across the pond in London, Ireland, Denmark, Germany and even around the globe in Australia. All over the world people are fired up to play. They make the time. They seek out the opportunity. They live the dream.

Knowing there are so many out there, otherwise unconnected, strangers, all following the same attraction to the field, is humbling. It's also encouraging. And exciting as I meet so many on this adventure of baseball. Different ages, different backgrounds. Difference life stories...One game.

If the thought of playing again crosses your mind, don't ignore it. Let it grow. Let it burn. Let it consume you. Make a way to play. Find a team. Strap those cleats on, grab your bat bag and get back on the field. 

And if you already play and are reading this, help spread the word about the opportunities to play baseball to those unaware or on the fence. Let's keep growing the sport.  I welcome you to share this article to get the point across.


Play ball


  1. you can be young at heart again i umpire in different adult leagues its great and the friendship last


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