Country music has big connections to the boys of summer. If it wasn’t for his pitcher father, Tug McGraw, who helped get his son his record deal, the world may not have known Tim McGraw. Kimberly Perry is such a fan of the sport that she married catcher J.P. Arencibia. There are also numerous artists who seriously considered pursuing a career in baseball before trading in their bats for guitars.
1. Garth Brooks
Many forget that in addition to being one of the best-selling artists of all time, Garth Brooks also played professional baseball. While he never made it to a regular season game, Garth has signed with the San Diego Padres, New York Mets and Kansas City Royals for spring training.
2. David Nail
Baseball brought David Nail to Nashville. The Missouri native played ball in high school and parlayed that into a athletic scholarship with Nashville’s Aquinas College.
But, it didn’t last long; David injured his shoulder during his freshman year and returned to his hometown, before eventually returning to pursue his musical dreams. Those dreams led him to trying out for the St. Louis Cardinals and playing at the 2010 Major League Baseball’s All-Star Legends & Celebrity game at Angels Stadium.
3. Kenny Chesney
You may know about Kenny Chesney’s affection for “The Boys of Fall” but baseball also holds a special place in his heart. The Tennessee native played ball in high school and even considered continuing once he went to college at East Tennessee State University, but opted against it when he saw that the time commitment required for the sport.
4. Charley Pride
Before he made a name for himself as a musician, Charley Pride pursued a career as a professional baseball player. He began pitching in the Negro American League and worked his way into the New York Yankees farm system. Although he didn’t make it to the major leagues during his playing career, in 2010 Charley became a minority owner of the Texas Rangers.
5. Luke Bryan
“I learned early on that I wasn’t an athlete,” Luke told CMT recently. I saw all these boys hitting multiple home runs and not getting drafted, and I thought baseball is not for me! Maybe I need to pick up a guitar.” But, that didn’t stop Luke from joining the Chicago White Sox for a little batting practice recently. However, it did solidify his career choice.
— Chicago White Sox (@whitesox) March 25, 2015
6. Brian Kelley
Florida Georgia Line is more than just a group name, it’s also where Brian Kelley pursued his dreams on the ball field. The singer-songwriter attended The Florida State University — which is located just South of the Georgia line in Tallahassee — on a baseball scholarship, before transferring to Nashville’s Belmont University, where he continued to play ball, but also met his future roommate and bandmate Tyler Hubbard.
Image Source: Kansas City Royals, Instagram, Florida State University