Hard-throwing 9-year-old banned from youth league

Ben ErnstCorrespondent IAugust 26, 2008

Jericho Scott is a pitcher, a pretty good one at that. Sadly, it seems that he is too good for his baseball league in New Haven, Connecticut. Apparently his fastball which tops out at 40 mph, is too fast for the 8-10 year old league.

Scott was banned from the league, and the team was asked to disband and be redistributed among the other teams. When His coach Wilfred Vidro let him pitch anyways in the following game, the other team immediately packed their bags and forefeited the game.

So this begs the question, can you really punish a player, much less a 9-year-old boy, for overachieving at a game he loves? "I feel sad," said Scott. "I feel like it's all my fault nobody could play."

Whether or not the league is just looking out for the other boys who cannot hit Scott's heat,  he is being told he is too good to play baseball.

Now, the decision might be made that he will be pushed to a higher level of play, or play a different position, but that is not what I wrote this article about.

I wrote it because at almost every aspect of sports, players that are skilled, excel, and produce should be rewarded. College and High School players can be rewarded for strong play by being drafted. Minor leaguers will get promoted. Major leaguers will get pay raises. If someone like Jericho Scott performed like he does now at any of those levels of play, he would deserve to be rewarded.

I fully understand that his competition is only 8-10 years old, but if someone his age can overachieve on the mound like he has, then there is no reason why someone else could overachieve in the batters' box.

There seems to be only one choice for Scott, that he plays against higher skill level of kids. But really, Jericho came to the New Haven Youth Baseball League just to have fun and play ball. It's a shame he's too good to do even that.