Monday, June 23, 2008

Goodbye to Little League

Pictures from tonight's exciting game

J's double right up the middle
J catching
J's last Little League at bat
Line drive!
Ella completely unaware of all the nail biting going on around her
She obviously had a very important phone call to make

Today Jason's Little League team played in Championship game for their division. What a great game! They were loosing 5-1 and came back in the fifth inning to tie it. Then in the bottom of the fifth the other team put on three mores run. Now we're in the top of the sixth in what was looking to be Jason's last Little League game. Many of the boys are 12, so for all of them their Little League careers were coming to an end. If they don't score three runs now the game is over. The coach turns to the dugout and says "Com'on guys, this is it. This may be your last game". With that several of the boys got very emotional. Hearing him say that got me a little emotional too! How could this be? They're too old for Little League??? Weren't they all just playing T-ball yesterday? So here we are, we're at the bottom of our batting order. The first two kids strike out. OK, now we're back to the top of the order. Jason's good friend Johnny gets up to bat. He gets a double after several foul shots and what felt like the longest at bat ever! Guess who's up next, with two outs, in a Championship game, in his very last Little League game---Jason! I thought I was going to throw up!! Jason being very steady under pressure gets up to bat with all the confidence in the world, meanwhile I'm sick to my stomach thinking "Oh God, don't let him strike out, it can't end like that!" A friend standing next to me says "don't worry he'll hit the ball". And that he did. He hit the hardest hit ball of the game, a line drive......right back to the pitcher!!! Game over! J gave it his all, as he always does, and the pitcher made a great catch. Jason's coach standing there all ready for the "pep talk" is pleasantly surprise when J turns around, not crying, but with the biggest, most genuine smile on his face.

And so with the exception of the All Star tournament starting this weekend, we say goodbye to Little League. We are grateful for all the wonderful memories, for all the wonderful coaches, all the great friends we've made, and for all the wonderful life lessons learned here. J--you've come a long way baby!! I can clearly remember your first T-ball game. How cute you all were when you all would run to get the ball, the entire team at once! You've worked so hard over the years and have developed into a wonderful ball player. I admire your complete dedication to your teams, your never wavering confidence, and mostly the fact that you NEVER give up. I am so very proud of you for all that you've accomplished, but most of all I am proud of you because you got up to bat beaming with confidence, with two outs, in your last at bat in a Championship game, and although your team lost and you were the last out, you walked off the field smiling and knowing it's been a great ride!


Joanne said...

Now you have me tearing up. . . sounds like a great game ~ what a wonderful boy you have there :)

Anonymous said...

Do not think of it as the end -- but as a new beginning!!!!!!! Jason's baseball years are far from over. Great job Jason! It looks like he had a great time.
Keep smiling,