Credit: Eileen Meslar

The 50-year-old slugging third baseman is entering her fifth decade of play and showing no signs of slowing down. Lisa Pugh plays in four leagues each summer—16-inch and 12-inch on both coed and women’s teams. “I play south side, north side, west side—anywhere in Chicago. My traveling team takes me all over the midwest.” Raised in Cabrini-Green, Pugh’s been swinging a bat since “I played strike-em-out-against-the-wall as a kid. I like the competitiveness. I like showing my skills.” She once hit a 12-inch softball almost 300 feet. “We were playing in a tournament in the Wisconsin Dells. I got a nice, clean rip and it went straight up and over the center field fence. I did my home run trot—took my time going around the bases. Even the pitcher said, ‘Good hit.'” If by chance, you should see her playing ball this summer, say hello. Maybe you can talk her into joining your team—lord knows the Reader squad could use her. She’s not above being a ringer.