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Play Ball

The 2018 Little League baseball season is in full SWING as many youngsters across our great nation are gearing up for a late summer run. Many local teams had their opening day ceremonies here recently and the madness of hanging out at the ballpark every single night has officially begun. We’ve been playing games for a few weeks now, but there is always something special about announcing 80 kiddos and watching them run onto the field all at once. It’s controlled pandemonium. The players pose for pictures and rehearse the pledge, but most would rather stay home and play video games instead. True statement.

Jensen is in his sixth year of organized ball. Yes. We start them young. He plays for the Trail Inn of the Hepburn Lycoming Little League. Jensen, league age 9, and his chums are off to an impressive start. They are a well-oiled machine and a great group of kids. Jensen enjoys the game of baseball, and his passion is starting to rub off on Dad. Believe it or not — I’m actually looking forward to his final season in the minors. Did I just admit to that?

I too played lots of baseball when I was his age. I wasn’t the greatest player, but I could hold my own. I guarded second base and pitched for Boulder Arrowhead Little League of Billings, Montana. My 12-year-old All-Star jacket still proudly hangs in the closet. Incredibly I made it all the way to Williamsport and the Little League World Series that summer. My team got knocked out in the state semifinals, but my family moved here in August. I was actually in the stands for the 1988 championship game. You can’t make it up.

My short-lived career came to a screeching halt my freshman year. I didn’t make the WAHS baseball squad that spring and Coach Grove told me I should focus more on golf. I was a little bummed at first, but I guess it all worked out for both parties. The Millionaires were one of the top dawgs in the state during my stay, and I have been struggling to find the short grass ever since. Much love Scott.
I was asked to help with Jensen’s team this year, but I am having a hard time understanding my role. The other three coaches have an extensive list of responsibilities, and there’s me. I do my very best to maintain order in the dugout and coordinate the cheers, but I can’t relate to these kids. I’m struggling.

I have one impressive coaching resume, but it certainly doesn’t help. I never had to deal with eight and nine-year-olds crying over a strike out. I have nothing to share when we are at the plate. Coach Marc is at first, Coach Jimmy is on the mound, Coach John is at third, and I am in the dugout talking Xbox.

Things will get better as we are only three games in. Perhaps I will find a groove and actually help this team win. I would like to wish all of the area youngsters the very best. Good luck boys and girls. To be continued. Cheers.

Webb Weekly

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