Primetime Softball

Baseball has always been a way for people to enjoy themselves and let off some steam, and the cast and crew from some of the top primetime television shows are joining in on the fun.

After a few co-ed softball teams were formed among a couple television shows, the event stimulated more interest from other programs. Eventually, what began as a loosely orchestrated Sunday-afternoon play date developed into the full-fledged Prime Time Softball League.

Among the teams currently participating are the television series "Desperate Housewives," "The Office," "How I Met Your Mother," "Modern Family," "The Mentalist," and "Wizards of Waverly Place."

It all began in 1989, when a few of these softball teams ran into various roadblocks such as reserving fields and recruiting umpires.

After Larry Rosenthal, Rosario Roveto, Tom Oseransky, and Mike Sexton, all managers of their own teams, decided it would be easier to overcome these obstacles with a league of their own, the PTSL was born.

"It was started in the late 80's when crews were getting together and playing softball together to have some fun. They decided to form a league to make it more official," says Matt Barber, number 23 on the "Bones" team.

When the league was formed, many production companies and other industry corporations wanted to be part of it, but a league that began with sixteen television shows needed to draw the line somewhere. Thus it became a rule that to participate in the PTSL, the team must be formed from a primetime television show.

Last Saturday, a game was played between "Bones" and "The Office" at the Hjelte Sports Complex in Burbank.

By a score of 27-0, team "Bones" made it clear that they were holding nothing back.

However, the monumental blowout was expected from last year's league champion, and was good natured in actuality.

"It's a lot to zero," said an "Office" team member with a sheepish smile.

In fact, the feel-good attitudes of the teams participating made it evident that these games are put on for pure merriment, a characteristic that has made the league so successful.

The league's motto is "To have fun!", ultimately making the final score almost meaningless. The season takes place over three and a half months and then extends into conference and divisional playoffs, and a league championship game.

For many of the team members, participating in the PTSL is a way to have some fun on the weekends and enjoy some friendly competition that can be hard to come by for an individual in show business.

 For some, it is also a time to spend with family, as it gives them an opportunity to bring along their children and spouses.

The PTSL is currently celebrating its twenty-first season. With 40 teams participating in last season alone, it is likely that the number will continue to rise as the league popularizes the primetime playing field.