Grandson Starts Eighth Season
My grandson Matthew is only 11 years old but is starting his eighth season of youth baseball having started playing at the age of 4.
He was on the Groves, Texas Little League All-Star team last season but is finding out that he can’t rest on his laurels from last season.
Matthew is an excellent fielder but has had trouble hitting the ball until lately. A little bribery never hurts since his dad is paying him $5 for balls hit out of the infield and $10 for balls hit to the fence.
His hitting improved immediately as the bribery paid off as he hit balls out of the infield and to the fence lately.
His defense which has always been superb got even better lately when one of the other outfielders dropped a ball but Matthew who was playing center field and backs up the other outfielders caught the ball before it hit the ground.
He also plays shortstop and third base when needed. He isn’t pitching much this season because they have a new pitcher who struck out 17 batters in one game which is amazing for a Little League pitcher to have that kind of control.
When he did pitch last season he pitched well as evidenced by his two inning stint during an All Star game when he pitched two scoreless innings in relief with no batter getting past a one ball count with Matthew on the mound.
Matthew enjoys playing baseball and is focused on the game when in the dugout. When he plays shortstop he backs up the pitcher on every throw from the catcher to the mound.
Surprisingly Matthew doesn’t watch much baseball on television because he is more into playing baseball video games. He told me that his favorite player Albert Pujols hit 300 home runs during his last video game season.
The best thing about Matthew is that he plays baseball the way it is meant to be played. He is always alert as to what is going on when he is on the field.
His dream is to play in the major leagues someday. He probably will have to hit a little better to accomplish that goal but with his desire to play well it could happen someday.
Last summer I was able to go to all his All Star practices and his All Star games and it was an experience I will never forget.
Just to see the smile on his face while he is playing makes we wish more major leaguers enjoyed playing as much as he does.
If he does make it to the majors by the age of 21 I would be 75 and hope I am around to see him play.