This League is Full of Miracles
My son Danny is seven years old, and he loves baseball.
In the morning, it’s often the first thing he asks about. In the evening, he asks his mom or me to sing “Take Me Out to the Ballgame” before he goes to sleep. His first word was “ball.”
We have countless conversations about his favorite team, the Pittsburgh Pirates, and he knows how they are doing as a team and as individuals. He also usually knows who their next three opponents will be. But his interest is not limited to the Buccos. He has strong feelings about teams and players from both leagues, not to mention rules and strategies. He recently asked me to explain the infield fly rule.
I did my best.
The most recent book he read was about Roberto Clemente. The next book on his list is about Cal Ripken.
In all this, I don’t think Danny is that unusual. Lots of kids love baseball. But playing on a typical baseball team would be difficult for Danny because he has a disability and uses a walker. The Miracle League of the South Hills in Western Pennsylvania lets Danny play the game he loves without limits. And it’s not just Danny. Thousands of kids with disabilities get to play in Miracle League fields across the country. They all get to be a part of a team. The Miracle League of the South Hills has an inclusive field and league so that everyone can participate. Players are paired with a “buddy,” who helps them hit the ball, run the bases or just cheer them home.
The Miracle League is about baseball but also the community it creates. We are grateful to the Pirates, their partners like FedEx and the community for supporting the Miracle League. We are proud to be a part of it.
Below are a few images of Danny throwing the first pitch at the Pirates game on September 19, 2014.