Globe iconLogin iconRecap iconSearch iconTickets icon

Did you know these 5 celebrities played in real Spring Training games?

Being a celebrity is pretty great. You get to star in movies, eat at the best restaurants and pretty much act however you please:

And, most importantly, you can play baseball at Spring Training if you want.

On Thursday, Will Ferrell -- yes, that Will Ferrell -- will take a turn on the diamond. He'll play for 10 different Cactus League teams in a single day -- the Mariners, A's, Cubs, Angels, Reds, D-backs, Giants, White Sox, Dodgers and Padres -- and appear at every position on the field. It's all part of a partnership between MLB and a new HBO special from Funny or Die, which will be dedicated to the charities like Cancer for College. When you're famous like Ferrell, you can do things like this. 

But five celebrities before Ferrell tested their skills in Florida and Arizona during the month of March. Here are their stories: 

Kevin Costner


Costner, who crushed some BP for the Indians back in 2013, played for a Mariners Class A affiliate in 2002. The team was taking on its parent club with the actor at shortstop. Costner went 0-for-3 at the plate and made an error in the field. Later in the game, he was subbed in to pitch and ended up facing off against pinch-hitter/manager Lou Piniella. Costner nearly hit him, sending Seattle's skipper flailing to the ground. Aw man, what would Billy Chapel say?

Tom Selleck 

Selleck, a noted Tigers fan, got one at-bat with his favorite team down in Lakeland, Fla., in 1991. Detroit manager Sparky Anderson decided to put Selleck into a game as a pinch-hitter in the eighth inning, and although he struck out, he seemed to thoroughly enjoy his Spring Training experience:

"I really felt I belonged in spring training with Detroit when some of the guys put Atomic Balm (a fiery muscle salve) in my jock. If the players kid you, you know they like you."

"Mr. Baseball" continues to keep a close eye on everything that's going on at camps across the country:


Bruce Hornsby

Hornsby is friends with former MLBers such as Mark Langston, Kirk McCaskill, Wally Joyner and Rex "Moon Man" Hudler. In 1997, the Grammy Award-winning artist got the opportunity to play like them. Angels manager Terry Collins put Hornsby into a Cactus League game as a pinch-runner, but Hornsby was stranded at first after a George Arias pop-up. Sorry Bruce, sometimes that's just the way baseball is.

Garth Brooks

Brooks is a Spring Training veteran, having played for the Padres (1998 and '99), Mets (2000) and Royals (2004). The country star went 1-for-22 with San Diego and 0-for-17 with four walks (!) for New York. He tallied at least one hit for KC and, after the game, admitted he was more shocked than the pitcher. He was even a kind of good luck charm for the Padres and Mets, perhaps helping push those teams to the World Series in '98 and '00. 

Here are some more photos of baseball Garth just because:



Billy Crystal

Crystal was the most recent celebrity at Spring Training -- spending his 60th birthday atop the Yankees order in 2008. The lifetime Bombers fan looked happy to be there, but he K'd in his lone at-bat (probably because his eyes were closed):


Listen to Crystal describe his experience in the below clip:

We'd also like to give a quick shoutout to MLB Network's Tom Verducci, who spent five days at Blue Jays Spring Training in 2005. Verducci popped up to first in his only at-bat, but still managed to get his very own baseball card. Good job, Tom.