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LLWS is enjoyable baseball

August 29, 2011
The Mining Journal

Some people can't stand watching baseball. They say the action is sporadic and if it's a 2-0 game, forget it. They think that's boring.

Me? I like watching baseball, either in person or on television. I enjoy the skill of the players, the strategy used by managers and especially, any late-inning heroics that may spring forth.

I especially like watching the Detroit Tigers. Most nights when I'm at home - the Lovely Linda Lou will attest to this - I watch Jim Leyland's club on TV as it battles for the American League Central Division title.

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Justin Verlander and Miguel Cabrera are two particular favorites as they continue to show why they're two of the best players in baseball.

Lately, though, I watched some of the Little League World Series baseball action out of Williamsport, Pa.

If you missed it - the competition ended Sunday - you missed a lot. It was exciting, featured many storylines and showed youths at their best.

There were terrific pitching performances. There were spectacular hitting displays. There were clutch fielding plays.

Most of all, there was unbridled enthusiasm shown by the players and their families during the annual two-week tournament.

A lot of the players showed poise beyond their years. In front of 30,000 fans or more in Williamsport and before a national ESPN television audience, many players - all 11-13 years of age - showed remarkable calm and focus with so much at stake in their young lives.

Of course, not everything went as they had hoped, or planned. A fielding misplay here and there, a wild pitch, or a strikeout at the plate that ended a rally or a game no doubt caused a lot of heartache.

There were no doubt a tear or two shed along the way for some of the players and their followers.

Some players stood barely 5-feet tall, while others - like several from Venezuela - approached 6-0. But it didn't matter how big they were. What did matter was skill and execution.

I marveled at how some of the young players were able to smack a pitch that came at them in excess of 90 mph as calculated from where their pitching mound was in relation to the plate.

I also got a kick out of how one team, I can't remember which one, gathered at home plate to celebrate a teammate's home run and then fell simultaneously to the ground when he jumped on home plate.

It just added to the overall enjoyment of watching the LLWS.

The tournament is done, but will never be forgotten by the participants and their supporters.

I got a kick out of it, too.

Craig Remsburg can be reached at 906-228-2500, ext. 251.



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