Keeping the blogosphere posted on the goings on of the world of submarines since late 2004... and mocking and belittling general foolishness wherever it may be found. Idaho's first and foremost submarine blog. (If you don't like something on this blog, please E-mail me; don't call me at home.)

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Boat Teams Top The Standings!

I always loved playing for the boat softball team. I was a serviceable pitcher and decent catcher, and had this hitch in my swing (dropped my right hand under the left when I swung) that made me send all low-and-outside pitches blooping over the 1st baseman's head; I generally hit over .600 (and slugged about five points higher). Granted, this wasn't a real sport; really, can any athletic activity where you know a bunch of out-of-shape 30 year olds will almost always beat (and beat badly) a team of 19 year olds be called a "sport"?

That's why I was interested in seeing the current softball standings for the SUBASE NLON Intramural Softball League. I was disappointed to note that there were only two boat teams listed, but happy that they held down the top two spots in their division. Congratulations to the Providence and Missouri! I know it's tough for a boat to put together a team that can show up for enough games, what with weekly ops and duty sections. Still, I think it's a great team-building activity, and I think more boats should do whatever it takes to compete in the base league. When I was in the yards on the Connecticut and Jimmy Carter, we had really good teams -- made the playoffs every year. On one occasion, I was able to convince the CO to let me send 10 guys off the boat during pre-Alpha Trials Fast Cruise to play in an important playoff game; of course, we had to forfeit the next one when we were actually out on Sea Trials.

What are some of your favorite memories of boat sports teams?


Blogger John Byron said...

Catfoot Campbell was a SO-1 (SS) and the best softball pitcher in SubLant in the late '50s. Though attached to CORPORAL (SS-346), he never sailed with the boat but instead was one of large number of 'ghost riders' in SubLant, softball players earning subpay on one of the boats but seconded to the Tycom softball team and never at sea.

8/13/2009 11:10 AM

Blogger wtfdnucsailor said...

The only time boats I was on were able to field teams was in the shipyard. As a JO, I played defensive linebacker substitute for the Seadragon Flag football team. We did fairly well in the standings and it helped keep the crew busy during a tough overhaul. The most interesting sport team I was on was at Nuclear Power School in Mare Island in the early sixties. The team was composed of a bunch of ensigns fresh from college (mostly USNA) and we won the intermural championship. The CO of the Power School got into some hot water with Rickover when he got wind of the team but since our academics didn't appear to suffer, nothing more was said. The same group of ensigns formed a team while at SubScol in New London the next season and took that intermural trophy as well.

8/13/2009 11:15 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I restricted my sporting activities to after hours at the Grotto, Dialtone or EM club. At least thirty victories and only one dose of the clap....

8/13/2009 11:32 AM

Blogger tennvol said...

I can't wrap my mind around the idea of playing in a league while stationed on an SSN.

8/13/2009 11:48 AM

Anonymous sdc said...

Well, seeing as how I was one of your EOOW JOs and the coach of that Hall of Fame CT Huskies softball team (i wonder if they still keep that name?) I have to say I thought you were one cool ENG for breaking us free for those three hours! Letting us out to do that did a lot for morale in my opinion. I will also always remember how I drove back six hours after I transferred to my next duty station to come back and play during the playoff finals. Kinda crazy, but a way to see my shipmates one last time.

8/13/2009 1:07 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

In the shipyard on Drum and then on a boomer, we had some pretty good teams and was normally let go to play. Kept morale up. The best was my last command on the Holland. The great thing is you have all those bodies to choose from. But the majority of the starters were us old farts (the khakipants). We pretty much ruled the field in WestPac, except for the Indy. We even done OK in the civilian tournaments on Guam and anyone stationed on that island knows how serious they take their baseball and softball. Wasn't a military team on the island that could touch us. Right before we left for decommissioning, they had a tournament in our honor and a traveling team of retired pro baseball players came to the island to play an exhibition game during the tourny and we were selected to play them. Just a couple of names like Vida Blue, Tug McGraw. A great experience!


8/13/2009 2:37 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Although not a boat team, I did play for the bar league when I was stationed in Subic Bay. We tried not to expend too much energy during the games in order to participate in after game activities (if you know what I mean).

Nothing beats hearing our "cheerleader" girls singing the submarine song during games. Ah, Subic that's America!!

Jim C.
Retired ANAV

8/13/2009 4:02 PM

Blogger Atomic Dad said...

We had an unofficial indoor soccer team on the Kentucky that played in a Bremerton city league. It was a really great time. The captain joined our team and he was a real competitive guy. He got a little irritated when we got beat by a high school aged team that ran circles around us.

All in all it was a great time though. Our league had one other boat team from the Maine, and a couple shipyard teams out of PSNS.

I would do it again if the planets would have aligned and the boat schedule would have allowed it.

We missed the last two games of the season (out on patrol).


8/13/2009 5:21 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

When I was in new construction on the Michigan, I played 1st base and we had two players that were awesome. One of them played on the Navy Softball team and he was in center field. When Cliff would throw from third base or Dan would throw from center field, I could hear the ball sizzle before it got to me. Sometimes I would only have time to put my glove where I thought it was going to go.

In new construction, on the Chicago, we had two teams. A couple of us got tired of showing up at each practice only to sit on the bench when the “True Jocks’ came to play on game day.
So, we started the “Fun Team”. We got a bar to sponsor us. They only wanted two things, they got to play on the team and we had to stop by the bar afterwards for a round of drinks. We had a few rules for our “Fun Team”. What ever it was that you were good at, you wouldn’t start there and every three innings, everybody rotated to new positions and if you were on the bench, you rotated in.
We had a blast and we spanked the boat’s “Serious Team” when we played them.

That Damn Good Looking Aganger From Iowa

8/13/2009 5:41 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

we were too busy going to sea all the time on the Alex (SSN-757) to have a softball team thanks to Lee O Moss and Group 2. didnt help that Johns Hopkins University gave us a bunch of toys to play with when we went underway.

8/13/2009 5:49 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

USS FLORIDA (B) had a great soccer team in the 1997-2000 time frame. In addition to some former college players, there were a couple guys named Jose and Pepe. They must have been part of the crew although they never seemed to be at quarters...

8/13/2009 6:57 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Soccer sounds like something the nucs would play!

8/13/2009 8:40 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

If you are an operational submarine and you have time to play softball league you are probably not doing your job at work. I'm sure you CSMP or Divisional Records could use an audit.

8/14/2009 12:05 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

If you are an operational submarine and you have time to play softball league you are probably not doing your job at work. I'm sure you CSMP or Divisional Records could use an audit.

Sounds like someone got locked in a locker and snapped with a wet towel one too many times in gym class

8/14/2009 12:34 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

When I was stationed on the "Wolf" (Building 21) in 97-01, we usually had a great softball team. My first year we made it to the championship game against another boat if I remember correctly. I played on the boat soccer team also. We didn't do as great with that sport. Does anyone remember the Subase New London Battle of the commands? That was pretty fun.

8/14/2009 1:48 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

"If you are an operational submarine and you have time to play softball league you are probably not doing your job at work. I'm sure you CSMP or Divisional Records could use an audit."

Precisely the khaki attitude that led me to 6 and out. Let's see, never mind allowing personnel to actually do their job, let's find some busy work. I can hear it now: Day after duty and everything is done? So what, you're here until 1600. That's the way it was when I was a blue shirt . . .

8/14/2009 2:02 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anon 8144 2:02---How about not painting all of us with the same brush. The comment you referenced was anon also, no indication the source was khaki. As for your experience, sorry that you had it, some boats are that way. None of my 4 boats were, maybe I just got lucky. As for sports, do beer ball games count? Had a few of those, khaki,raghat,who knew the difference during the game, we just had fun. Also had one beer football game,was a disaster. Beer+Football= No No, don't do it!


8/14/2009 6:24 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have played on many boat softball teams. Soem sucked and some were good. In 1993, I played on the NavSubTraCenPac Pearl harbor's softball team. I like to play, but most of the team were serious ball players. So we not only played in the base league, but we played outside the gate. Our overall record was 52-9. We also won the All Military tourney in Hawaii. I had a blast and it was alot of fun!


8/14/2009 7:06 PM

Anonymous Ross Kline said...

To Anon at 12:05 PM - so go audit. If you find any problems, I'll fix them after the ballgame!

8/14/2009 7:39 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well radio'ed records don't need on!

8/14/2009 8:51 PM

Anonymous STSC said...

I've never had a team on a boat that was worth a damn, but it didn't stop anyone from playing.

The best teams in my experience are the ones who have the most time to practice (!?) together. On an operational boat & with a regular inport duty section rotation, we were usually lucky to field enough for the games, & even with plenty of interested players it would be tough to gather everyone for a solid practice.

8/16/2009 7:02 PM

Blogger phw said...

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8/17/2009 6:15 AM

Blogger SJV said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

8/17/2009 6:19 AM

Blogger Bubblehead said...

Deleted a spamment.

8/17/2009 8:17 AM

Anonymous Jim Armstrong said...

The only thing we did on Pollack & Guardfish in the 70's that qualified as "sports" was 12 oz. curls at lunchtime. Most of the guys on the boats then couldn't run more that 5 yards if they tried. (Myself included!)

Word verification = "lardersi". Hmm. Code for "Larder is I"? Joel, you been peeking?

8/17/2009 2:18 PM

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8/17/2009 4:00 PM

Anonymous PapiWideGlide said...

I was on PCU Tennessee and we had a flag football team (the "Tennessee Tuxedos"...we were drinking a bit when we thought that one up) that was pretty good. QB was a former high school star, a few of us linemen had sticky hands and pretty fleet feet which allowed us to take advantage of the "linemen are eligible" rule. Best memory was when we beat the team from the USS Pittsburgh, who were a bunch of really fast guys, but they just could not wrap their heads around linemen catching passes. I caught a TD pass that was at least a 50-yard play, another lineman burned them for a TD, and those TDs pretty much broke them for the game. We had a pretty decent softball team, too.

8/19/2009 5:16 PM


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