Jerry ‘The King’ Lawler plays final softball game after 40 years of ‘Lawler’s Army’
MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - He’s known as ‘The King’ in the ring, an artist and now we introduce you to Jerry Lawler, the softball player.
For more than 40 years Jerry ‘The King’ Lawler has escaped the wrestling limelight on the diamond.
“This, the softball, being on a field, look at this,” Lawler said. “There’s nothing better than being on a baseball field or a softball field. The bright sun and all your friends out. You can’t beat it.”
For the past four decades, the King’s team Lawler’s Army has met one night a week to play beer league softball. It’s a hand-picked team. Some members have been on the team for decades, and now have their sons playing with them.
“It’s been fun playing with him for 30 years. Not many people have gotten to play with him,” Ricky Gresham said.
Ricky’s sons Hunter and Zach grew up watching Lawler’s Army games. “It’s been fun,” Zach Gresham added. “Growing up watching Jerry’s been fun. Every time I watched I wanted to play it, so now I get to play it.” His older brother Hunter said, “We look forward to it. Thursday night and it’s just been a journey. We’ve had really good seasons and won it all and we’ve had OK seasons and still made our way to the championship.”
This season, the team found their way to the championship game, again. A game Lawler wouldn’t miss for the world.
“I cut my vacation in Ft. Myers, Florida short just to get back for this game,” Lawler said.
Well, this championship game had a little bit more meaning. Not just because it was the championship game. It was the final game Lawler’s Army would play.
“No, it stops, it’s it. No more Lawler’s Army after this,” Lawler said when asked if someone else could continue on the team.
The King treated it like any other night, but the game drew a crowd. Fans, friends and former players. Jerry Calhoun was on the first Lawler’s Army team. He played for nearly 20 years.
“When I just talked to him I said I can’t believe it,” Calhoun said. “I thought you’d be playing until you couldn’t walk anymore. And I’m right on that because he can hardly walk now!”
Even WMC Action News 5 Chief Emeritus Meteorologist Dave Brown wouldn’t miss The King’s last softball game.
“It’s not bittersweet. I’m just looking at it as another night at the ballpark,” Lawler said.
On ‘another’ night at the ballpark, Jerry ‘The King’ Lawler went out in the most fitting way. Lawler’s Army won the final championship game in the team’s final game.
Copyright 2021 WMC. All rights reserved.