The show likes to call them “Baseball Wives,” but Nicky Getz and Kim DeJesus don’t sound crazy about the label.
By TIM ENGLE
The Kansas City Star
“I don’t like to refer to myself as a baseball wife because I think we have a lot more to offer,” DeJesus says. “But it’s an interesting aspect of our lives.”
The women make up one of 11 teams competing on CBS’ “The Amazing Race,” which returns for its 23rd season on Sunday. Even if you’re not much of a Royals fan, you probably recognize the last names. Kim is the better half of former Royals outfielder David DeJesus, now with the Tampa Bay Rays. Nicky is married to current second baseman Chris Getz.
Nicky Getz, 28, is also a certified public accountant with a master’s degree. Kim DeJesus, 32 (“You can say I’m 29”), is a mom — the couple have a young son — and part-time actress and model.
Getz splits her time between Kansas City and Grosse Point, Mich., but mentions that she and her husband used to spend the off-season in Chicago. That happens to be where the DeJesuses live. The two met when their husbands played here and became fast friends.
Although it’ll be hard to escape the Baseball Wives thing, Getz and DeJesus wouldn’t mind being called “The Bunnies.” Huh?
“Nicky’s mom used to call her Bunny,” DeJesus explained in a phone call this week. Because “Nicky’s so cute and cuddly.”
Then they started calling each other bunnies.
“Any other name (viewers come up with), I don’t think we want to know,” Getz says.
A duo of bunnies may be new, but otherwise this “Amazing Race” sounds like it’s sticking to its tried-and-true formula. The teams will be crisscrossing the globe — four continents, nine countries — competing for the $1 million prize. One team is made up of two former NFL players, Chester Pitts and Ephraim Salaam, who played for the Houston Texans.
Getz and DeJesus say they can’t reveal any of their wild ’n’ crazy adventures, but we’ve already heard about Formula One racing in Abu Dhabi, paragliding in Chile and taking an icy plunge in Norway. “Definitely nothing that we would do on vacation with our husbands,” DeJesus says.
Of course, what we don’t know is whether Getz and DeJesus stuck around long enough to do all those things. Slowest teams are eliminated along the way.
And given what we’ve seen on “Amazing Race” before, athletic skills definitely come in handy. Speaking of which …
“If you’re going to compare us to our husbands, we’re not very athletic,” Getz says. But “we do Pilates and group fitness and run.”
Even so, “we were kind of shocked at how physically challenging some of the things were,” she says. “Being two girls on a team makes it a little bit more challenging.”
As an actress DeJesus was used to being on camera, but for this show “you’re mic’d basically all day long and (then you realize) ‘Oh my God, I just said that!’ I kinda didn’t think about it after a while.
“I think both of us represented ourselves well (although) we probably said some stupid stuff here and there.”
They filmed the show in June, a period in which Chris Getz was sent down to the minors and David DeJesus landed on the disabled list. The wives, meanwhile, could not communicate with the outside world: no email, phone or Skype.
The moral of the story: “‘Wow — you really need your ladies home,’” Nicky says of their spouses.
Both members of Team Orange, as the show declared them (“Makes us look tan,” DeJesus quips), had to push their limits.
Getz had to overcome a fear of airplane lavatories. “Yeah, I got over that real quickly,” she says. “We had to get ready pretty much every morning in an airplane bathroom.”
And vegetarian DeJesus, who’s into “a really clean diet,” was nervous about “eating something crazy.” If they got a choice, Getz was the one who would slurp up the weird stuff.
But it’s all over now and they’re still pals. They’ll be in Chicago together to watch Sunday’s premiere episode.
“We wouldn’t trade the experience for anything,” DeJesus says.
To reach Tim Engle, call 816-234-4779 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. On Twitter: @tim_engle