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The other side of Little League

Discussion in 'Sports and News' started by slappy4428, Jul 31, 2007.

  1. slappy4428

    slappy4428 Active Member

    Excellent story,... inspirational -- a word I don't like using a lot...

    Young Farmington Hills baseball player with no hits all season smashes a good one

    July 31, 2007


    Alec Kraft walks up to home plate in excruciating pain. Each step brings a surge of pain through his ankles and knees, like he's being stabbed with hot needles.

    Alec, 12, of Farmington Hills has arthritis, one of the cruel side effects of Crohn's disease. He missed a couple of games this baseball season when he was in the hospital getting IV treatments. There are days when the disease flares up so badly that he has to use a wheelchair.

    But he refuses to give up. Refuses to quit.

    As he steps into the batter's box on this warm summer evening, the pressure is incredible: the Blue Jays, Alec's team, are losing 9-7 in the bottom of the seventh and final inning against the Astros, the best team in the NFWB, the North Farmington West Bloomfield baseball league.

    There are two outs. Two guys on base. The whole game comes down to this one at bat.

    His stomach aches -- Alec is almost doubled over in pain, another symptom of Crohn's, which affects the digestive system.

  2. Barsuk

    Barsuk Active Member

    Thanks a lot, Slappy, for making it so dusty in my living room. Jeez.
  3. Seahawk

    Seahawk Member

    That was a great story. Must be the season Barsuk, because it was a bit dusty in this home as well.

    This is probably nitpicky, but why was he leading off second base, and why was he 70 feet from home plate when he reached third? Have the rules and dimensions of Little League changed since my childhood? When I was 12 (a while ago now), that was the Major League division (9-12), and the bases were 60 feet apart. There was no leading.

    The story itself was great. I'm wondering if there was an attempt to enhance some of the details. Sorry for bringing it up, but it struck me as similar to watching a movie that involves sports, and then seeing a detail that makes no sense, which can ruin a good story.
  4. PeteyPirate

    PeteyPirate Guest

    Steroids have changed the game, my friend.
  5. crimsonace

    crimsonace Active Member

    Many youth leagues, including the one in my community, have eschewed traditional LL rules for what they call "real baseball" within the last 5 or so years. Bases are 70' apart (instead of 60') for 12-year-old players. Players can lead off, and the dropped third strike is a live ball (it isn't in LL rules). The diamond shrinks slightly for younger players -- IIRC, the bases are at 65' for 10-year-old players, and the pitching rubber is slightly closer.

    Travel teams have been playing with scaled-down MLB rules for some time. It has recently been filtering down to other youth leagues (Williamsport is pretty staunch on its rules, and the 12U Cal Ripken divisions of Babe Ruth still use the Williamsport rules, but many local leagues and virtually all travel leagues and tournaments use the MLB rules with a scaled-down 70' diamond).
  6. Seahawk

    Seahawk Member

    Thanks for the explanation Crimson. I had no idea about the modified leagues.

    There was a quote from a coach, I think, saying, "that is what little league is all about."

    I assumed that it was a Little League game.

    What you say makes sense for the story. That being the case, I take back my comments about the enhancing of details.
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