Jason Aldean becomes an Atlanta Brave for a day
Jason Aldean circled the bases, touched home plate and collapsed next to the batting cage, pulling his cap over his face.
“After lunch, let’s come back and do it again,” Atlanta Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez joked.
Sprawled on the ground and struggling to catch his breath, Mr. Aldean replied, “No, I’m good.”
The country music star got a chance to live his other dream Thursday, working out for more than two hours with his favorite baseball team while trailed by a crew filming it all for a TV reality show.
Mr. Aldean didn’t make the team — with cameras rolling, Gonzalez and general manager Frank Wren told the singer he had been “cut” after the workout — but by all accounts the former high school player held up well alongside such stars as Chipper Jones, Dan Uggla and Brian Mccann.
“Not bad,” Jones said. “He’s a little more athletic than we’re used to seeing from our normal celebs.” Gonzalez agreed. “He’s the best celebrity I’ve seen, by far. Not even close,” the manager said. “You can tell he’s got a little background in baseball.”
Wearing uniform No. 9, Mr. Aldean started out taking grounders at first base, scooping up a few low throws. Then he got some solid wood on the ball during his turn in the batting cage, his longest drive landing on the warning track and short-hopping off the fence. Finally, he joined the team for baserunning drills, tailing along at the end of the pack.
Mr. Aldean was taping a segment for the reality show “Day Jobs,” which airs on the country music cable network GAC.
Normally, the show follows artists as they return to jobs they held before becoming famous, but he had no desire to go back to his old line of work.
“I was a delivery guy for Pepsi,” he said. “That was not cool. I was not going back and doing my old job. I worked too hard to not have to do that anymore. So they said, ‘What about we do kind of a dream job deal with you, where you get to do something with the Braves?’ I was like, ‘Now that I would be into.’ ”
Mr. Aldean, 35, was born and raised in Macon, Ga., about 75 miles south of Atlanta.
“I’ve been a fan of this team for a long time,” he said. “I grew up watching ’em. To get to come out and do this today is a big honor for me.”
Mr. Aldean’s most recent album, “My Kinda Party,” received Album of the Year from the Country Music Association and was nominated for a Grammy. He plans to release a new album in October.