Parity is a good thing in recreational sports. Kids choose rec leagues because it’s supposed to be fun.
If they want to play at a higher and more competitive level, they can try out and pay top-dollar to play on a travel team with more elite players from a broad geographic cross section. La Jolla Youth Baseball is a rec league with players of all shapes, sizes and abilities and the goal when forming teams is parity.
In a perfect world, every team would be 10-10 and the playoffs would be one-run games. In each of our LJYB divisions — except Shetland where ties are the norm — any team can beat any other team on any given day. The number of come-from-behind wins and one-run games being posted each week is proof that there is parity in the league. This week a couple teams in the cellar knocked off the top teams to tighten up the standings just in time to wrap up regular-season play on Saturday.
The “Game of the Week” was played between Mustang rivals Morgan Stanley (8-0) and Cass Street (7-1). It was a close game going into the bottom of the 6th inning with Morgan Stanley leading 6-2 and Cass Street getting the last at bats. Closer Blaise Gimber walked the first two batters followed by a single to load the bases with no outs. The tying run at the plate was Michael Campagna Jr., who leads LJYB with six home runs in the season. He hit a shot to third base where Austin Schroeder made the catch and tags the base for a spectacular double play. “Oh My!” With two outs and two aboard, Kai Leach drove one over the center fielder that scored two runs. With the tying run at the plate — again — Gimber got him to pop up and the game ends 6-4.
That’s rec baseball at its finest! Both teams went to Islands after the game and enjoyed their “Kids in Uniform Eat Free” special offer for LJYB players.
Saturday marks the end of the regular season and teams will take a break so the LJYB Tournament teams can prepare for the annual Memorial Day Tournament hosted by Tecolote Youth Baseball. LJYB will enter two teams from Pony, three teams from Bronco, four teams from Mustang, three teams from Pinto and for the first time — two teams from Shetland. Following the tournament, Playoffs will resume on June 1 with Championship games being played on June 10 and 11. Good luck to all of the post-season players!
—Tom Murphy, LJYB