The Little League World Series began this week, running until the championship game on August 26, to be televised by ABC. The event features the best 12- and 13-year old baseball players in the world, converging on Williamsport, Pennsylvania. Here is a helpful guide to the participating teams, bracket, schedule, and history of the event.
If you haven’t met “Big Al”, well prepare yourself.
All hail Big Al pic.twitter.com/c6c4vVCoX1— Kent (@RealKentMurphy) August 11, 2018
He’s not lying.
Big Al speaks! I talked to viral Little League sensation and his parents about his overnight fame, his nicknames and hitting dingers. He hit two more yesterday, including this one.— Mike Oz (@mikeoz) August 13, 2018
Meet Big Al right here https://t.co/fNimhnszvH pic.twitter.com/NLmJMXmPWp
The event evokes memories of my own Little League experience. I came to baseball late - I was probably 10 when I started really playing. I “tried out” and went undrafted, so my dad took all the leftover kids and formed his own team.
We were awful. But it was a terrific experience. Because no one knew how to catch, my dad put me back there and I loved it - and was pretty decent back there. I also got to pitch a lot, and by the end of the year I was our team’s top pitcher. We only won one game that year - defeating a team that had future minor league player Jimmy Terrell (son of former Royals infiedler Jerry Terrell). But I developed enough that I caught the eye of another team and was quickly picked up for the next year.
And that team only won one game.
So my first two years of Little League were overflowing with losses, but I still had a blast. My confidence improved as I excelled on the diamond, I made some great friends, and the time spent practicing with my dad are some of my fondest memories of him. I would eventually get picked up by some good teams, almost toss a no-hitter (one out away before a bunt single blew it!), and even homered (legit over the fence!) in one my last Little League games. My career stalled out early in high school, so Little League provided some of my best baseball memories.
What are your favorite memories of Little League? The chants, the bubble gum, the cross-town rivalries. What were your successes? Failures? What ballplayer did you model your game after? Tell us if you were a pitcher or a belly-itcher!