Joe Theismann: Champion for Minor League Baseball?

WASHINGTON — Joe Theismann is a pro football legend–but these days, he’s throwing his weight behind a proposal to bring more professional baseball to the D.C. region.

Working in partnership with financial backers, Theismann is stumping for a proposal to bring independent minor league baseball to Loudoun County, likely at a location near Redskins Park in Ashburn.

“I’ve been a baseball fan all my life, I was drafted to play professional baseball at college,” Theismann said, according to the Loudoun Times-Mirror. “There’s been a lot of conversation about hopefully bringing baseball to Loudoun County. My role hasn’t been defined other than been an enthusiast about having it be brought here.”

Sure enough, Theismann was drafted in the 39th round of the 1971 MLB Draft by the Minnesota Twins, who moved to Minneapolis from Washington, D.C. in 1960.

Instead, Theismann went on to a Hall of Fame collegiate football career at Notre Dame, then spent time with Canadian Football League and Miami Dolphins before landing in Washington. He led the Redskins to the Lombardi Trophy in Super Bowl XVII.

This baseball team does not yet have a name or location for a ballpark, but the team would likely compete in the Atlantic League, a league of prospects and fading stars unaffiliated with Major League Baseball. Noteworthy Atlantic League alums are current Nats infielder Stephen Drew, Ryan Langerhans, Rich Hill, Scott Kazmir and newly inducted Hall of Famer Tim Raines.

This is not the first attempt to bring a team to Loudoun County, as a group backing the Loudoun Hounds dissolved in a series of lawsuits. However, the hope is that this time, with star power from people like Theismann, the D.C. area can add more baseball to the mix.

“Any way we can grow Loudoun County to create more activities for families in the Loudoun County area, it would be a terrific thing,” Theismann said. “The affordability for families to be able to go and appreciate baseball.”

 

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