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Nuxhall's Miracle League Fields is taking a team on the road for the first time

There were more than enough high-fives to go around at this June, 2021 game in Fairfield.
Ann Thompson
There were more than enough high-fives to go around at this June 2021 game in Fairfield.

Excitement is building at the Joe Nuxhall Miracle League Fields in Fairfield as players learn they're hitting the road to play three other teams. The athletes with special needs are headed to the Ripkin Experience in Pigeon Forge, Tenn., in July, and for many, it's their first time traveling with a team.

Teams joining Joe Nuxhall’s Miracle League Fields include Sioux City, IA; Hampton, NJ; and Pittsburgh. Former Reds first baseman and Hall of Famer Sean Casey is behind the program in Pittsburgh. See a video of his team coming to Fairfield last year to play.

JNML Miracle Series

According to the executive director of the Nuxhall Foundation, Tyler Bradshaw, Casey and Kim Nuxhall, son of former Reds player and broadcaster Joe Nuxhall, were talking and, "They said, 'How cool would it be for our players to have a road game experience?' They get to hop on a bus and head to a different city and have people welcome them and meet new friends and play the game they love."

The trip, which will promote and raise awareness for inclusion in baseball, is scheduled for July 29-31.

Bradshaw says the Miracle League motto is, "Every individual with every challenge should get every chance to play the game of baseball."

WVXU has reported on the Fairfield rubberized accessible fields and the hundreds of players that take part every summer. The youngest player is 4 and the oldest is 79.

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They were thrilled to be back to playing after COVID, as WVXU reported in 2021. In this 2018 profile, WVXU reported, “For shortstop Michael Vaught, the joy comes from being with friends. 'I love being with all my friends. It's not about winning or losing. If you win, oh yeah! But if you lose, oh well, who cares?' he says. (Still, those who know Vaught say he is extremely competitive.)"

Another road trip is planned for 2024 when Fairfield's players will head to Pittsburgh to play Sean Casey's team.

Ann Thompson has decades of journalism experience in the Greater Cincinnati market and brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise to her reporting.