(Rachel Dunn, left, prior to being embraced by the not-remotely glamorous Jim Bowden)
Incredible, right? “The life of a baseball wife can be lonely, chaotic and uncertain,” writes the Washington Post’s Kate Kilpatrick. “And when your husband plays for the worst team in baseball, there is even less pretense of glamour” It’s gonna be a one tough high school reunion for Brooke Villone, then.
Everyone thinks: “Oh my gosh, what a wonderful life you have. You can go shopping every day,” says Yormarie Nieves, 30, a former model from Puerto Rico who’s married to Nationals backup catcher Wil Nieves.
But the reality, says Rachel Dunn, 27, wife of first baseman Adam Dunn, who signed a two-year, $20 million contract with the Nationals in February, is “not even remotely as glamorous as people think.”
You have to lead screaming children through crowded airports every week, handle the family finances, deal with rumors about groupies and on-the-road affairs. You might even have to give up career ambitions to live your partner’s dream.
Hardest of all: trying to keep the family together while your husband travels eight months every year.
“It’s basically like being a single parent,” says Abby Kearns.
Which is all made worse when your husband plays for a team that loses far more games than it wins.
“You’re in it together,” she says. “Your husband comes home upset, you’re upset. When he has a great game, you feel like you had a great game.”
“All these guys for the most part have been the creme de la creme of their high school, college, whatever,” says Rachel Dunn, on the phone from Texas where she’s just put her 2-year-old son (also named Brady) to bed. “They’re used to being winners. They’re used to being first place in whatever they do. I know Adam has that mentality — it’s really hard for him to lose.”
You hear that J.P.? Adam Dunn has a pulse! His family suffers!