'Where Are They Now' with Little League World Series' Biggest Phenoms
The Little League World Series is one of the greatest sporting events put on every year. For two weeks in Williamsport, Pa., players from ages 10-12 compete for the world championship.
What makes the tournament so great is the players aren't competing for a million-dollar contract. They're only competing for the right to be called the best that year.
Over the years, many players have endeared themselves to a national audience. From dominance throughout the series, to a clutch hit to win the game, fans can name players who they'll remember for a lifetime.
So what happened to those players?
Here's a look at what six of the biggest LLWS phenoms are doing today.
Cody Webster, 1982 Kirkland (WA) LL
Cody Webster helped his Washington team pull off one of the biggest upsets in LLWS history.
Facing Taiwan in the championship game, which had won 10 of the previous 13 LLWS titles, Webster threw a shutout as Washington ended Taiwan's 31-game winning streak in Williamsport with a 6-0 win.
Webster peaked that day, as he suffered a shoulder injury and played just one college season.
Now, he operates a baseball academy and enjoys a quiet life.
Todd Frazier, 1998 Toms River (NJ) LL
Toms River, N.J. was one of the first U.S. teams on the map in the LLWS.
In 1998, Todd Frazier was one of the players who helped the New Jersey team beat Japan 12-9 in a championship game slugfest.
During the tournament, Frazier batted .600 with four home runs. He went 4-for-4 with a home run in the championship game.
Danny Almonte, 2001 Bronx (NY) LL
Perhaps the most controversial player in LLWS history, Danny Almonte is a name synonymous with the lengths people will go to in an effort to gain an advantage.
Almonte pitched for the Bronx Little League team during the 2001 LLWS. His fastball reached 75 mph, and he struck out 62 of the 72 batters he faced in Williamsport. He also threw a perfect game against Florida.
In the U.S. finals, that same Florida team defeated Almonte's squad—in large part because Almonte had reached a required rest period after pitching in the U.S. semifinals.
After the tournament, it was found that Almonte wasn't actually 12 years old. An investigation into the Dominican Republic's head of national public records declared Almonte was really 14, and because of that Almonte's team forfeited all games and records. He was cleared of any wrongdoing and stayed in the U.S.
He wasn't selected in the 2006 MLB draft and instead joined the Southern Illinois Miners in the independent Frontier League.
Almonte has since given up dreams of playing pro baseball and is now an assistant high school baseball coach.
Michael Memea, 2005 West Oahu (HI) LL
In one swing Michael Memea crushed the hopes of a nation and gave Hawaii the state's first LLWS title.
International teams had won nine of the previous 11 titles, and Curacao looked as if it was going to make it 10 of 12. But Hawaii tied it with a three-run bottom of the sixth, sending the game into extra innings, where Memea performed his magic. It also happened to be Memea's only hit of the game.
It was his first hit since Hawaii's third pool-play game against Florida, which featured current New York Yankees third-base prospect Dante Bichette Jr.
After high school, Memea played college baseball at Linn-Benton Community College in Oregon. However, he is currently on a Mormon mission in the Texas Houston East Mission, according to his page.
Kyle Carter, 2006 Columbus Northern (GA) LL
During the 2006 series, Kyle Carter was simply dominant on the mound and at the plate. He started with a 3-2 win in relief, going one inning with two strikeouts against Staten Island, N.Y.
In Columbus' second game of the series, Carter picked up the win again, this time going six innings with nine strikeouts. He also hit a solo home run at the plate.
In the U.S. semifinal against Portsmouth, N.H., he earned his third win, pitching six innings with eight strikeouts. He added a home run and two RBI as well.
But it was in the LLWS final against Japan where Carter came up the biggest. Japan had outscored its opponents 31-4 during the previous five games of the series. But Carter threw a complete-game with 11 strikeouts to help Columbus claim the title.
Now, he is at Miami-Dade Junior College. He transferred from the University of Georgia in late 2012 after being arrested twice during the fall semester, per Roger Clarkson of Athens Banner-Herald.
He has yet to be drafted by an MLB team.
Dalton Carriker, 2007 Warner Robins (GA) LL
Just a year after Carter worked his magic for Columbus, Dalton Carriker did the same for fellow Georgia team Warner Robins.
Carriker hit a walk-off home run in the bottom of the eighth inning to beat Japan and give his team the LLWS title. It was a moment that will be considered one of the greatest in LLWS history...right up there with Memea's walk-off home run.
But that's not the only thing that set Carriker apart. He was great throughout the rest of the series. Outside of the championship game, he was 10-for-13 with three home runs, five RBI and seven runs scored.
Recently graduated from high school, Carriker is set to take the field for Wallace State University, according to his Twitter profile.