To the editor of THE EAGLE:
Let me start by first congratulating the Pittsfield Babe Ruth 14-year-olds and their coaches on an outstanding season. The coaches are to be commended for the work they put in and the excellent handling of this group of kids, but above all the players deserve the credit for the quality of play and sportsmanship they delivered.
If you were in Westfield on Tuesday night unfortunately you witnessed the heartbreak that was brought upon these kids (through no fault of their own) when they were eliminated from the New England Regionals because of a managerial mistake/oversight. This never should have happened and I would hope another group of kids wherever they may be will never have to experience this heartbreak again.
We live our lives with rules for most everything we do, especially in the games and sports that we play and yes, it is up to us to teach our children these rules and that they are to be adhered to, but there comes times when maybe we have to revisit these rules. Maybe then we will see that all of these rules we live by are not set in stone and that some changes might be in order.
Pittsfield was eliminated from the tournament because a pitcher had pitched more innings than the rules allow. This was a coaching mistake/ oversight. I do not fault the coaches for this, again they are to be commended for their time and hard work. We all make mistakes in life. Some just happen to occur at more inopportune moments.
Maybe the rules should state that in this instance the coach should be ejected from the game and maybe even not allowed to be a part of the remainder of the tournament, but to banish the entire team and take away from them the opportunity of a lifetime of having gone on to the Babe Ruth World Series? I am having a real hard time with that.
Again, I want to congratulate the coaches for a great season and job well done and to the players for the enjoyment you provided your families and fans. As hard as it may be, you have to put this behind you and move on. Put as much effort into the upcoming school year as you did in this baseball season and come out swinging again as 15 year olds next year. We’ll be there watching and remember Š You Walked Out Of Westfield Winners!