Little League World Series 2012: Most Impressive Individual Performances so Far

Tim Keeney@@t_keenContributor IAugust 22, 2012

Photo courtesy of ctpost.com
Photo courtesy of ctpost.com

The kids can put on a show, too. 

Sure, Felix Hernandez is throwing perfect games, Adam Dunn is hitting bombs at a pace fast even for him and Billy Hamilton is stealing bases like he's Justin Bieber and the bases are young girls' hearts, but the little leaguers can entertain, too. 

The Little League World Series, aka the Greatest Show on Earth, is in full stride and there have already been plenty of memorable performances. Let's take a look at the best individual ones. 

Will Lucas, SS/P, Connecticut

Connecticut entered its elimination game with Indiana needing a top-notch performance from starter Will Lucas.

I'd say he delivered. 

The big 12-year-old (5'8", 121 pounds) absolutely baffled Indiana en route to the tournament's first no-hitter. Lucas went six innings, walked just one and struck out 13. That's the equivalent of striking out 19 or 20 in an MLB playoff game with your team facing elimination.

That is absolute big time.

Oh yeah, and Lucas is also five-for-eight at the plate with one triple, one homer and eight RBI (most in the tourney) in three games. 

Japan's Pitching Staff

Okay, this is technically cheating because it's not an individual performance, but I suggest you roll with it. You're going to want to hear these gaudy numbers.

Kotaro Kiyomiya, Yuta Ishida and Noriatsu Osaka have combined to pitch 15 innings for Japan, which currently sits at 2-0. They have allowed zero runs, six hits, walked one and struck out 29.

That's a K/9 ratio of 17.4, an ERA of 0.00 and a WHIP of 0.47. Those are what I like to call insane numbers. 

Japan has "only" scored nine runs through two games, but when your entire pitching staff is virtually unhittable, that'll do.

Bradley Smith, P/OF, California

Smith, like the others on this list, has done his fair share of pitching (10 strikeouts and 2.42 ERA in 9.2 innings), but he's really here for his dominance at the plate.

The 6'3", 183-pound (remember when I called Lucas "big"? Well, that makes Smith the Hulk) stud from Petaluma has come to the plate 10 times. He has four singles, two doubles, two home runs and five RBI. For all you non-math majors out there, that means he's hitting .800.

That's close to being a good save percentage in hockey, let alone a batting average in baseball. Goodness. 

This kid, who towers over his teammates, has already gotten a hit off the unhittable Lucas—but I would love to see him match up against Japan's studs on the mound. 

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