More than 250 business professionals have turned in their business suits and suited up for the National Adult Baseball Association (NABA) Florida World Series, currently being held at Historic Dodgertown.
NABA is one of the fastest growing adult baseball organizations in America. Nationally, 68,000 participants play in 85 leagues, with 14 tournaments held each year. NABA teams are organized into eight age divisions, providing a competitive environment for all the participants.
The NABA Florida World Series attracted 13 teams from New York, Texas, Tennessee, North Carolina, Indiana, Wyoming, Colorado and Florida. Participants are staying at the Historic Dodgertown hotel villas as well as throughout town, for a truly immersive experience.
“It’s awesome,” said NABA president Shane Fugita. “The history is unbelievable. The most important thing is the teams like it. Many players love staying here and walking out of their (on-site) rooms in the morning. That is a unique thing that piqued our interest.”
And NABA isn’t your typical, recreational league. It’s a competitive league with varying levels of playing experience.
The Melbourne Beach (Florida) Orioles features the Flutie brothers, Doug and Bill. Doug is famed a Heisman Trophy Award winner and played professionally for NFL, CFL and USFL. As the Boston College quarterback, his “Hail Flutie” touchdown pass is considered one of the all-time greatest collegiate football and American sports history moments.
The Fluties are very familiar with Historic Dodgertown, as children coming to Dodgertown – Vero Beach to watch Dodger Spring Training games, and as adults playing here with NABA.
“A great memory was we stood by the hedges (at Homan Stadium). We would slide down the hill to get foul balls. We were 8-10 years old at the time,” Doug said.
Growing up, one of Doug’s favorite players was the great Brooks Robinson. He recalls that one game Robinson was not in the line-up, but he ran into him at Holman Stadium.
Fast forward to Doug’s NFL career. In 1988 while a member of the New England Patriots, Doug played football at Historic Dodgertown as the team was preparing for a playoff game in Miami. The team stayed at Dodgertown over Christmas and practiced on the same field on which he is currently playing baseball. Unfortunately the team was eliminated from the playoffs, he said, before they got to the actual game, but he recalls spending Christmas at Dodgertown that year.
Field #1 at Historic Dodgertown features two below-ground goal post anchors. Since 1970, the NFL, CFL and collegiate football programs have utilized Historic Dodgertown’s outdoor and indoor training facilities, including the New Orleans Saints, Green Bay Packers, Cleveland Browns, Buffalo Bills, New England Patriots, Kansas City Chiefs, Philadelphia Eagles, CFL teams, and earlier this year Your Call Football.
“It’s very nostalgic to be here,” Doug said.
To learn more about NABA, please visit www.NationalAdultBaseballAssociation.com.
To learn more about Historic Dodgertown, please visit www.HistoricDodgertown.com.