MLB IMPACT ON YOUTH
By: Jossi De La Torre
LAKE CITY -- At the inception of a baseball player’s career certain inevitabilities begin to occur: the selection of a positon, the choice of a particular bat, and most importantly the choice of inspiration. In baseball, it is imperative for a player to find the rightful muse to continue the long, tedious journey of developing and mastering the skills for such a sophisticated sport.
The youth of Perfect Game Florida consider Major League Players as exceptional individuals who they long to be. This past weekend in Lake City, Florida, PGYFL Reporting found more insight on how the youth perceive professional players and teams.
Ten-year-old Maxwell Gallagher of the Diamond Dreamz 10u, expressed that at his age he truly values the Toronto Blue Jays’ outfield and admires “their cannon.” Gallagher believes that the Blue Jays showcase the correct attitude that is needed to play the game. When asked specifically what makes him be fond of the Blue Jays Gallagher answered, “How they go out to win even when they might fail.” With inspiration comes tradition therefore when asked what team he would desire to play for at this moment Gallagher replied, “Astros 1st base because they have the best record in the league and it’s a team that my family has always loved.”
Elijah Roberts of War hawks 11u, is truly fond of the famous Derek Jeter, like most, Roberts believes in the dedication and will that Jeter portrayed on and off the field. It is no doubt that Jeter has inspired the youth immensely. Roberts values Jeter’s leadership and authenticity, “Jeter did his own thing and started the ‘Jeter Hopper’.” Roberts believes that Jeter has the ability to be an inspiration to all. When asked what MLB team he would play for he responded, “The Orioles as Center Field.”
Twelve-year-old Weston Turner of Bandits 12u, highly values Bryce Harper for his courageous way of being. After a recent brawl, Harper seems to have gain quite the attention within the youth. When asked what he like most about Harper, Turner replied, “His hair and great personality.” Turner considers Harper to be “the hero of the team.” Turner expressed that Harper, “doesn’t worry about himself, just his team.” If Turner was to be drafted today, it is no surprise that he chose to play alongside Harper in the Washington Nationals.
Last but not least, fourteen-year-old Dylan Linville aspires to be like the players on the Atlanta Braves but also Mike Trout of the Angles. Linville respects and admires Trout’s “love for the sport and good attitude.” Since Linville grew up loving the Atlanta Braves, when asked what position and team he would play for right now in MLB he replied, “A pitcher for the Atlanta Braves.”
Whether a player is ten years old or fourteen, inspiration is amongst every game and team of baseball. Some may find inspiration in players like Harper who stick up for their team or in heroes like Derek Jeter who have contributed more than half their lives to the game. Every season PGYFL players gaze onto the field or at the television with hopes of being on the other side, playing for their favorite team in the future.