As are most of his fellow GI Joes, Hardball is naught but a normal human, lacking special powers of any type. He is however rather athletic, being a former minor league baseball player, and has advanced artillery skills both through his pro sports experience and due to military training.
Hindrances / Augmentations:
Grenade Launcher (i): Hardball's main piece, this weapon can 'bloop' grenades at a target anywhere within line-of-sight. It fires explosives that detonate to inflict intensity 10 explosive damage to all uncovered targets within near missile distance of where they hit.
Semi-automatic Pistol (a): whenever he has to inflict less drastic damage, Hardball often brandishes this weapon at foes instead. He may either fire a single round from this backup piece to inflict his Agility +4 in damage, or a three-round burst from it to inflict his Agility +5 in damage.
Boxing (s): while he could brawl with the best of them before enlisting, Hardball's fighting skills were polished up by the Army. Hardball may divide his pre-card play action score between two unarmed melee attacks, the last of which occurs as a contingent action.
Guns (a): a function of his core military training, Hardball knows how to use most modern firearms with proficiency. Whenever wielding a standard, semi-automatic, or fully automatic rifle or pistol, Hardball may resolve shooting attacks at a reduced difficulty.
Marksman (a): a skill supplemented by years of baseball experience, Hardball excels in the use of line-of-sight weaponry. When operating mortars, rocket launchers, or even his grenade launcher, Hardball may do so at a reduced difficulty, ignoring most range penalties all the while.
Military / United States (w): the source of his combat talents, this skill showcases where Hardball got his killing edge. He has the ability to function effectively in a fighting unit, and knows the Standard Operating Procedure like the back of his hand.
Sports / Baseball (a): where he got his start, Hardball was a minor league baseball player for five seasons. The man excels in all baseball activities, only failing to make it into the big leagues because he lacked 'star power'. He may attempt related actions at a reduced difficulty.
Trivia / Baseball (i): supplementing his baseball skills, Hardball knows the game inside and out. He's a living, breathing baseball historian, and can't help but talk about it all the time. He attempts Intellect actions regarding baseball knowledge, no matter how arcane, at a reduced difficulty.
Hardball is a member of the GI Joe team, and can consider his fellows reliable contacts at all times; the team tends to look after their own rather fiercely. Hardball also has several additional contacts in both military and baseball circles, as he's spent years working in both lines of work.
Soldier: say what you will about Hardball, but the man is a born soldier. He didn't originally intend to enlist in the Army, but the man found his true calling there due to his uniquely cooperative personality. He likes to function in a team, and to do so well!
The GI Joe operative known by the name Hardball wears a casual uniform. It includes a white baseball shirt with blue trim over a gray, long sleeved shirt, brown trousers, black leather boots, black fingerless gloves, a green leather belt, a green holster, and a blue baseball cap.
Hardball loves baseball. The man likes to talk about it constantly, even to his fellow Joes who aren't big fans. Of course, they have to respect what he's accomplished in the sport over the years, and usually put up with his athletic banter because he's generally likable otherwise.
Real Name: Wilmer S. Duggleby, Grade E-4
Occupation: infantry, former minor league baseball player
Legal Status: citizen of the United States with no known criminal record, legally deceased in the Devil's Due continuity branch
Marital Status: single
Alias(es), if any: none
Group Affiliation: GI Joe
Weight: 200 lbs
Other Distinguishing Characteristics: none.
Hardball has always loved the great American pastime, and has engaged in it since he could walk. The man has ate, drank, breathed, and slept baseball all of his life, and it shows - he played the sport through high school, college, and then through a significant stint in the minor leagues.
A center fielder, Hardball valued team work over loud-mouthed show-boating, but this is ironically what caused him to not get picked up by the major leagues. He didn't stand out despite his skills, in either a good or bad way, and the MLB decided he lacked that certain 'something'.
Growing disheartened over time, Hardball eventually left the minors, taking his skills somewhere that valued teamwork over 'star power'. In other words, he enlisted! Hardball found his calling in the armed forces, and proved over time that he was the quintessential team player.
Bringing his hard-earned baseball skills into play while serving, Hardball became very good at the operation of various line-of-sight weapons, particularly the grenade launcher. The man proved so good at calculating trajectories in his head and on the fly that he got himself noticed.
This attention ultimately landed him a job on the elite GI Joe team. Once he'd made it past their grueling entrance exams, Hardball had finally gotten onto the big leagues - though not as he'd originally intended. And he got to show what he could do on his very first mission with the Joes!
This involved the team hauling it out into the Caribbean to stop Cobra from claiming a brand new island that had formed a few years after Cobra Island itself came into being, due to the same tectonic processes those villains had tricked the unwitting Joes into unleashing.
Keeping Cobra off until it became apparent the land was transient in nature, Hardball and his fellow new recruits chalked their mission up as a success, and flew back home - and in doing so, left Cobra's goons clinging for dear life to the wreckage of their gear.
Hardball continued to serve with GI Joe until it was disbanded in '94. He presumably resumed work in the conventional military at that point, only returning to the team during the second Cobra Island Civil War, during which time all of the Joes were pulled back into active duty.
He stayed on with the team afterwards, happy to be reunited with his old buddies in GI Joe. Hardball continued on with them until a fateful mission in South America proved to be his last, while assigned to keep an eye on some Cobra goons down there with Rampart and Glenda.
When those villains were assassinated, the Joes investigated just what went down, only to find that the Cobras' deaths were partly used to draw GI Joe in. Before they could react, Hardball and his teammates were gunned down by operatives of the Red Shadows group.
GI Joe directories featuring a version of Hardball:
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