Saturday, September 01, 2001

Well, it looks like Danny Almonte is 2 years older than his peers on the Bronx Baby Bombers and his Little League opponents. Shame on the father of this child, and if the coach knew about it, shame on him also. Although I haven't heard anyone come out and say this, I believe that this situation is very common. I know it happens in leagues I have been involved with in Softball and Basketball, and I am sure it happens throughout childrens sports. I never liked it when I saw it happening, and often criticized coaches for doing it, but I know it has happened on some of my daughters teams (never in a team I have coached).

I wonder about the kids that may have had the experience of LL World Series semi's and finals, but were elliminated by Almonte's pitching in earlier rounds. These kids may have been denied the experience of a lifetime all because one parent or coach chose to *bend the rules* (aka cheat) in order for his team to win. Shame, Shame, Shame.

As a parent and sometimes coach of kids sports, I know how we all want to win (i am probably one of those parents that gets a bit carried away with winning), but these programs are for the kids... not us parents. Now its the parents and coaches who have put a black cloud over this Little League program... one of the greatest pastimes for kids all over the world, and an organization that has been important to kids for generations. Little League will survive. I hope that parents and coaches learn from this sorry event. I know it has given me a better perspective that playing fairly and making a good example for the kids, is far more important than winning ball games.

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