Hamilton Joes baseball team challenges star of ‘Top Gun’ to shirtless volleyball

Tom Cruise as Capt. Pete "Maverick" Mitchell in "Top Gun: Maverick." (Scott Garfield/Paramount Pictures/TNS)

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Tom Cruise as Capt. Pete "Maverick" Mitchell in "Top Gun: Maverick." (Scott Garfield/Paramount Pictures/TNS)

One of the more iconic scenes from 1986′s “Top Gun” was when the naval fighter pilots were playing sand volleyball.

Tom Cruise, who played Lt. Pete “Maverick” Mitchell (and is Captain in the 2022 sequel), was a part of the volleyball game, showing off a tanned and fit physique while donning dangling dog tags, jeans and sunglasses.

The Hamilton Joes, the defending champions of the Great Lakes Summer Collegiate League, is challenging Cruise, calling him the current box-office champion.

The much-anticipated sequel, “Top Gun: Maverick,” was released on May 27. Variety.com reported this week the movie has passed the $400 million at the domestic box office, flying by “Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness,” which was sitting at $398 million earlier this week.

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Coach Darrel Grissom [left] and Dr. Kim Lance unveil the uniforms that will be worn by the Hamilton Joes Baseball Club during a press conference at Ryan's Tavern in Hamilton, Saturdaym February 14, 2009.

Credit: Robert Leifheit

Coach Darrel Grissom [left] and Dr. Kim Lance unveil the uniforms that will be worn by the Hamilton Joes Baseball Club during a press conference at Ryan's Tavern in Hamilton, Saturdaym February 14, 2009.

Credit: Robert Leifheit

Combined ShapeCaption
Coach Darrel Grissom [left] and Dr. Kim Lance unveil the uniforms that will be worn by the Hamilton Joes Baseball Club during a press conference at Ryan's Tavern in Hamilton, Saturdaym February 14, 2009.

Credit: Robert Leifheit

Credit: Robert Leifheit

“Look, if Tom Cruise wants to pretend to be an athlete by playing volleyball or football or whatever, that’s fine. But if he wants to step it up and keep it real, he should accept my challenge to play shirtless volleyball against me and my team,” said Joes General Manager Darrel Grissom. “We’ve got a pair of season tickets with his name on them and fifteen percent off any one item at the souvenir stand if he accepts. We’ll even provide the shiny suntan lotion so we all glisten.”

If Cruise accepts the challenge and beats the Joes shirtless team, Grissom said “diminutive” actor can even pick the date from the list of home Joes games. For the remainder of June, the Joes are at home on June 18, 20, 23, 24, 25, 27, and 29. They have eight home games in July.

Grissom said he and Cruise “sort of have a bond already.”

“Listen, I rode in a Maverick in the ‘70s,” the general manager said of the old Ford model. “If he shows up to Foundation Field, after losing to me in shirtless volleyball, we’ll let him work in the beer and pop booth like he did in that ‘Cocktail’ movie.”

The Hamilton Joes are in the South Division of the Great Lakes Summer Collegiate League. For the 2022 season, the Joes are square at 4 wins and 4 losses. The Joes are wrapping up a three-game trip before coming back to Foundation Field, 1140 S. Front St.

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