I Was Cut From High Park Little League

baseballFreddie P shared a chain email that's been making the rounds and it opened an old wound. The email is for those of us born before the 1980s and it includes this line:

Little League had tryouts and not everyone made the team. Those who didn't had to learn to deal with disappointment. Imagine that!!

Those three sentences opened up memories I had successfully repressed. Here's my story, it will feel good to put this out there.

I have always loved baseball. It was my first sporting love, even before hockey. That 1983 Blue Jays team struck a chord with me and I was hooked.

I worked very hard at the sport. I listened to Tom Cheek and Jerry Howarth and learned when to take that extra base and when to throw where and the intricacies of the game. I worked on my fielding, my throwing, my batting and I followed the Jays with a fervent passion. I loved the Leafs, but the Jays were my team and I put myself in the game. I wanted to play ball.

I was a solid, smart player, but I wasn't very big. I'd say I did the most with what I had and probably a little more because I always gave my all. That bullshit adage about giving 110% was actually true in my case. I played every inning like it was the ninth inning of the seventh game of the World Series.

I played softball at Rennie Park in the Swansea League, but I wanted to play real baseball. I wanted to face the best around. I wanted to face fastballs and lay down suicide squeezes and steal off of catchers with a gun. I wanted to play High Park Little League.

I'll never forget the tryouts. I attended every one and gave my all. Others were pounding the ball and I was just trying to make good contact. Others were throwing home from the outfield with ease while I was just trying to keep my throws online. At the end of the tryouts, one of the coaches spoke to me and a group of kids and gave us the bad news. We weren't good enough for the High Park Little League majors.

That's right, I was cut from Little League. I was never going to play in the Little League World Series. I just wasn't good enough, and I returned that summer to softball at Rennie Park.

That was the first time I really wanted something and gave my all only to come up empty handed. They said you could do anything if you put your mind to it. Until then, I believed that. I was a decent player with passion, commitment and baseball smarts, but I had to learn to deal with one heaping pile of disappointment.

Imagine that.


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twins from bolton

Unfortunately you may have gave up. My 1 son didn't make the Rep team for 2 years in Bolton during Rookie & mosquito age years. He kept at it & finally made the peewee team in 2003.
He is now playing Major Midget Rep at 16 years old playing with 17-18 year olds & probably 3-4th best on team for defense & batting. He is the teams 1st string 3rd baseman, plays 1st base, pitches & has caught games for the team this year.

August 25, 2008 @ 7:55 PM

Steve from Pittsburgh

I was cut from 14th Ward Little League in Pittsburgh four times (1958-1961). At age 9, 10, 11, 12. Later, I ended up pitching for my high school team and for a Division I baseball program. There's no better feeling in life than proving someone wrong.

February 17, 2009 @ 6:51 PM

Tom Haivarlis

hello. I am 35 years old, played little league at high park from 82-85. A red wing, lost in the finals. An expo in the majors, 3 straight years in the final, won it on the book ends, finished first overall in the middle year and lost it, typical. I was cut from the 11 and 12 year old teams just as bluntly as yourself. Came back at age 19, coched till i was 32. As a coach on the 12 year old team and an underling, i was given the job of cutting kids the way you were cut. It's tough but the high park house league always felt vital in terms of proving you could compete against anyone in the country. What a a house league in its hay day...do i sound familiar? My point is, without the house league, there would be no all stars. hit me back

August 14, 2009 @ 3:18 AM

Andrew

Mr. Trimble is an amazing person but i will admit that he doesn't always make the best decisions.

August 27, 2009 @ 1:00 PM

Andrew

Mr. Trimble is an amazing person but i will admit that he doesn't always make the best decisions.

August 27, 2009 @ 1:00 PM

Mike Ireland

What a shame so many kids think baseball ends after little league. High Park players can continue in a house league until they are eighteen. The league lets ALL PLAYERS JOIN INCLUDING THOSE BOYS AND GIRLS WHO HAVE NEVER PLAYED.Currently we have 3teams but can grow to eight quite easily.If.you want to join show up or contact High Park baseball.

July 28, 2016 @ 3:45 PM

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