The Vandy Boys
If you live in Nashville and like sports, you can go to Tennessee Titans football games or Nashville Predators hockey games.
Or, if you’re a true Nashville insider, you can go to the best games in town, at a jewel-like ballpark just a few blocks from our knockoff Parthenon in Centennial Park. It’s Hawkins Field, home of the Vanderbilt University baseball team, who are known as the Vandy Boys.
We first went to Hawkins Field one beautiful spring day as the guests of our friends Bob Pitz and Carol Armes, who were season ticket holders. Bob’s office was just a short distance away, in the engineering department at Vanderbilt University. He and Carol were baseball fans, and so were we.
I had never liked college baseball, honestly for just one reason: the sound of bat hitting ball. In “real” baseball the bat was made of wood, and the sound was a pleasant thwack. In college, the bat was metal, and the sound was more of a ping.
It was a disgrace, a sacrilege. So I turned up my nose.
But on that beautiful spring day, in that lovely little park, I reconsidered. The sun shone. The breeze blew. And on the field, young men threw and caught and swung their bats—metal, yes, but really, was it their fault?