Friday, June 4, 2010
My Field of Dreams... Who Knew?
THEN: George on the 2004 T-Ball Cubs
NOW: George on the 2010 Major Pirates
I never would have expected it. I didn’t see it coming. I had no idea how deeply it would affect me….but I love everything about Little League baseball! After seven years of watching our son George play for Riviera Little League in Torrance, I have truly developed a passion for this game. I’ve been more involved myself as my husband Paul has coached a total of 4 regular season teams, 6 T-ball teams (yes, he has a lot of patience and our daughter's each played 2 years of T-Ball too), and 4 Winter ball teams over this time span. While I admit the t-ball years win over in the “oh how cute” factor, it’s been George’s time in the Minors and Majors that have really peaked my interest. I love going to those games. I get very emotional over the whole thing.
The reason for this post is because I am overcome with a great sense of sadness as I see George’s Little League career coming to a close (that means mine too!). Sadly, it’s the end of the season and he has his second playoff game on Saturday at noon. If his team loses (and I’m crossing my fingers and saying my prayers that they come up with the win), it will all be over for the Gerbracht family for Little League…FOREVER. I don’t know exactly why but this makes me very sad. I love everything about this Spring ritual (not to mention Summer and Fall too). From all the great friends and families we have met and known through the years, to seeing the boys in their uniforms out there playing with enthusiasm and pride, to sitting in the stands and cheering for our team, taking the hundreds (and I am not joking here, just ask my family) of pictures each season, getting recaps of all the games my son has spent his days watching his friends play, observing my son check the team rankings and stats, Opening Day, trophies, chewing gum in the dugout, the Little League Pledge, the snack shack (oh the money I have spent here), batting cages, practices, playing catch, pitching practice and the list goes on.
Since Paul has coached so many years, we don’t often fall into the regular team draft process but this year he did not coach and we were fortunate enough to end up on coach Mike Poulin’s (above photo) team, the Major Pirates. He is a real standout coach with a great outlook and spirit of encouragement that lights up all the boys on his team. It’s been an incredible year and we have one of the best (not in the win/loss category but they are a team to be reckoned with) teams in terms of attitude, spirit, encouragement and just plain fun. We have a great coaching group and really nice families, what more could you ask for? George has had a banner season and has been playing really well all year. I am always so proud of him after every game… and he LOVES this game. I think he is sad that it will be over too. But, baseball will continue with hopes to play travel ball and continue on with other leagues in the future. But nothing will replace the time we’ve spent at Riviera Little League these past seven years. It can’t be replicated and I must admit that it’s come to be my own little “Field of Dreams.” Each game has it’s own ending, each play has it’s own story and each player has his own dreams. Many are realized on any given day at or on the field. It’s a magical place and I will truly miss it when it is no longer part of our lives. Go Pirates!!!
George and "Coach" Paul on the Minor D-Rays in 2008
George and "Coach" Paul on the White Sox
Good bye and Farewell, the days may be numbered but the memories will last a lifetime!