ROUNDIN' THE BASES
Vince Gill walloped a home run ... Trick Pony's Heidi Newfield nailed Sammy Kershaw with a cream pie ... Chris Cagle chased Craig Morgan around the outfield.
But the day's biggest "streak" belonged to Brad Paisley's nearly naked drummer!
Hits and hijinks highlighted the City of Hope Celebrity Softball Challenge, which matched two star-studded teams -- playing for Nashville radio stations WSM and WSIX -- in a high-spirited five-inning game benefiting the City of Hope National Medical Center.
Vince, Lonestar's Dean Sams and newcomer Jimmy Wayne, who belted a home run, sparked WSM to a 20-15 win, one of the highest-scoring contests in the game's 13-year history. Vince's perfect day at the plate featured his huffing-and-puffing, inside-the-park homer, while Clay Walker and Linda Davis also contributed solid hits.
Chris Cagle, Steve Holy, Troy Gentry of Montgomery Gentry, and Emerson Drive's Brad Mates -- who made good on his Babe Ruthesque, pre-game prediction of a home run -- were the standouts for team WSIX, which cut the lead several times but still came up short.
But it was all in fun, and the stars made no bones about their softball shortcomings.
"The last two years I have struck out, so this year I just want to make contact," laughed Bryan White. Added Canada native Aaron Lines, "I was thinking about hitting with my hockey stick."
But the teams did manage to get down to some serious softball, until play was briefly interrupted in the third inning. Brad Paisley's drummer, Ben Sesar, streaked onto the field clad only in an almost invisible gray thong, sneakers and ball cap -- and flashed the crowd with a sign promoting Brad's new album.
Within seconds the security staff playfully wrapped the streaker in a red tablecloth and escorted him from the field.
But the antics didn't stop there. In the final inning, Trick Pony's lead vocalist, Heidi Newfield, got her revenge against Sammy Kershaw for throwing her out at first base -- by spraying whipped cream all over Sammy's face and backside! Sammy's wife, Lorrie Morgan, kissed some of the whipped cream from his mouth, to the delight of the crowd.
After the last out, it was clear the real winner was City of Hope, for which the annual event has raised more than one million dollars over the years.
Rebecca Lynn Howard seemed to sum up the feelings of her fellow players. "I'll embarrass myself any time," she declared, "for a good cause."