Last night, I enjoyed one of America’s favorite pastimes: T-ball.
Who needs Major League Baseball when you have seven energetic four-year-olds chasing after one ball and two others picking dandelions in center field?!
It’s hard for me to believe Peanut is four. I knew him when he was the size of a peanut in his mother’s belly and I was at the hospital the night (or was it morning?) he was born. I surprised him last night and he ran into my arms as soon as he saw me. My heart melted.
Before the game began, both teams stood on the chalk line, removed their hats, and recited the Pledge of Allegiance. I think it went something like this: Watermelon, watermelon, watermelon, watermelon ….. Play ball!
Peanut’s bat is as tall as he is, but he made contact with the ball each time. Plus, he’s seriously concentrating in the batter’s box!
Peanut and Peanut’s tongue ….. the two go together like apples and bananas. I swear, one of these days he’s going to bite it in half.He’s a very serious hitter and base runner. The tongue must be an antenna for concentration signals.
In the league Peanut plays, games have three innings and, during each inning, both teams score five runs. At the end of the game, it’s tied 15-15. Everybody goes home a winner.
Peanut scored a run in the first inning. WAHOOOO!!!!!
Players also rotate defensive positions on the field. Peanut began at second base, then transitioned to catcher. The protective gear was a bit large for his small frame. But that’s irrelevant.
At the end of the inning, players throw their gloves into the dugout and find their batting helmet and bat. They may or may not bat during the inning, but they’re suited up anyway. It’s T-ball, remember ….. four-year-olds are LEGIT.
Unless you’re tangled in the catcher’s gear.
Umm, Coach? I can’t see. Can you give me a hand here?
I’m glad to report that Peanut was not lost during the second inning stretch, he was found beneath a pile of red catcher’s pads.
During the third (and final) inning, Peanut played the position of short-stop. This is his I’m-ready-for-whatever-comes-in-my-direction pose.
At the end of the game, teams line up again on the chalk and prepare to shake hands with the opponent. It’s a great act of sportsmanship. Afterwards, there are a gabillion four-year-olds screaming and running in a gabillion directions. It’s pandemonium and chaos in a contained space: the T-ball field.
Then, Coach addresses his players for a debrief and they all lean in for a one-two-three GO METS cheer. A game ball is also given to a player that performed exceptionally well.
Peanut was presented with his first game ball tonight. He was beyond ecstatic. As we walked to the parking lot, he held it tight. He let me buckle him into his car seat and sat the ball inside his cup holder for safe keeping.
Afterwards, I followed Steph and Peanut home to see the rest of their family. At bedtime, Peanut was tucked in bed and the game ball was on his bookshelf. Before he went to sleep he hugged me tight and whispered in my ear,
Aunt Co, you have to tell Uncle Kebby that I got the game ball tonight. Don’t forget. Oh, and I love you.
When Peanut reaches the big leagues, remember you saw him here first!
Please excuse the terrible photographs. I must’ve turned the camera’s dial button while chit-chatting, so the settings were all messed up. I’m really sorry.