My little man...

There's a story that goes along with this picture; the story has a happy ending but certainly comes with it's challenges. Chase loves to play baseball, it's as simple as that. This season has been a little different than years past; the size of our league was somewhat smaller and the 11U team never came through simply because there weren't enough to commit to a 'travel season'. This merely left Chase at a point where his baseball season was coming to an end sooner than anticipated.

The 12U manager understood the situation the 11 year olds were facing and allowed them to 'try out' for his team. Only a few decided to do so but Chase was determined to make the effort. So, even though we were camping away that weekend, he wanted to come home long enough to try out. Mid day on Saturday, Ronnie drove him to the ballfield for a few hours then came back and finished our camping trip. The anticipation was on. By the middle of the week the posting would be up and either Chase would be listed on the roster or he wouldn't make the cut. Yeah! He was in. Let me add to that though that it was very clear that Chase would have limited playing time and would be considered an alternate. There was no guarantee as to how much or if he would play especially during the District championship and even more so if they advanced to the State tournament and we were/are certainly fine with that.

This team is such a strong team with so much talent, it is really alot of fun to watch them come together and play ball. Naturally, they did advance to represent our district in the State tournament in Richmond. This trip meant time off work, travelling to Richmond and unexpected expenses to us. It also meant practicing every day, no late nights being a 'summer boy' and minimal 'friend' time, not to mention sitting in the dugout during the games. The conversation with Chase was pretty straight forward. "Do you want to continue to be a part of this team, knowing that you probably won't play at the tournament?" After only a few seconds, Chase responded confidently and said "I want to be on the team". This is something that he really does love to do. He has gotten so much experience merely practicing and being coached by Kenny, Tim and Tuck. We are very grateful that he has been given this opportunity. Just today at the game, he was in the dugout cheering on the team, each one by name as they got up to bat or were in the field. Never once has he hesitated getting ready for practice and is always happy to be with this group of boys, alot of new friendships have come out of this and old ones strengthened. He has certainly taught us something as well.

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