When I heard that September is National Little League Month, I got excited. See, I'm from a baseball family. My parents played throughout their childhood and into college, my sister played from age 9 through college, and I played throughout high school and umpired the intramural league at my college. This doesn't begin to mention the shrine my mom set up for the Cincinnati Reds, or the obsession my sister had for the Atlanta Braves in the 90s, or how exciting it was to live in Kansas City when the Royals won the World Series a few years ago.
I still have all my certificates, plaques, trophies, and medallions from participating, winning tournaments, and setting records. I consider these personal achievements of hard work, practice, and love of the sport. Conveniently, I now work at a place that offers these items to the next generation of baseball athletes.
The fact is, I love the game, and I don't even begin to compare to Little Leaguers. If I love it, they breathe it. I played softball during waking hours; they play baseball in their sleep. Worldwide, 2.4 million kids play Little League baseball/softball. It's played in all 50 United States and in more than 80 other countries. That's a lot of baseball! Even celebrities (John Krasinski, Elizabeth Banks, and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, to name a few...) grew up playing Little League.
Why is this? Maybe it's the strategy involved in the game. Perhaps it's the adrenaline rush that comes with hitting a line drive. It could be the quality time spent with friends who also love the game. For whatever reason, this game has become almost legendary.
So, if you are one of the diehards, welcome! Have a fantastic month of celebration of the Great American Pastime!
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