Colorado youth savor opportunity to play pickup baseball with a major leaguer

THORNTON--It's not very often that kids have the chance to toss a baseball with a major leaguer. 

On Saturday, several members of the Northern Lights Little League had the opportunity to do that and a whole lot more. 

In town to play a weekend series against the Colorado Rockies, San Diego Padres' third baseman Adam Rosales took some time out of his schedule to hold a "Sandlot" style baseball game for kids ages 9-12 in the Thornton area. 

"To come back here, you realize that this is the most important thing," Rosales said. "This is where your heart is in baseball, and this is just awesome being out here on the Sandlot field."

This is the second such game that Rosales has held with youth baseball players, the first being in San Diego. 

Rosales said the 1993 classic baseball film, "The Sandlot", inspired him to come up with the idea to have these games with young players across the country. 

"I know that's what inspired us as kids to go out and play and just enjoy the purity of the game," Rosales said. "The great thing about something like this is that there's no pressure on you out here."

And, the kids didn't seem to feel any pressure batting against a major leaguer either. 

"I got two or three hits against him," said 10-year-old Lucas Lee. "It was a really good experience, and a lot of kids don't get to do this."

Rosales pitched the entire game as over 20 young players got the chance to take at bats, with their parents in the crowd looking on. 

"It's amazing that a major league baseball player would take some time out of his schedule--even when he's playing a game that night--to play with these kids," said Maria Kappel, whose son played in the game. "I told my son that this doesn't happen to everyone."

And, it will certainly give the kids a good story to tell at school next week. 

"I'm going to tell my friend that I got to play with an MLB player," Lee said. "And, I whooped his butt."

Copyright 2016 KUSA


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