SOUTH WILLIAMSPORT, LYCOMING COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — Friday means a break in the action at the Little League World Series, but that doesn’t mean there wasn’t baseball.
There’s not many better ways to celebrate Williamsport Welcomes the World than inviting a Hall of Fame MLB pitcher. The official medical provider for the Little League World Series, UPMC, hosted a wiffle ball game on their front lawn and invited Little Leaguers from far and wide to participate with one of the best closers that ever tossed the stitches, Lee Smith.
“I think I got them out most with my changeup. Those guys can swing it a little bit. It was really fun to get out here on the grass and play with the kids. That’s what I love,” Smith said.
Loyalsock Little Leaguers got to play with past and present top-tier athletes.
“Not a lot of people get to do it so when you get the opportunity, you only get it once. You gotta use it in a good way,” Loyalsock Little Leaguer Dolan Harmon said.
The visiting Venezuelans were excited to take the front lawn too.
“I’m proud of being here. I’m having fun with all the kids from the local Little League and especially spending some time with Hall of Famer Lee Smith,” Latin America region champion catcher/pitcher Luis Atencio said.
Smith says he wishes his career was a bit more like this game.
“I had like three shortstops, four second basemen and two first basemen. I could have saved like 800 games if I would have had that many infielders. It’s about being out here with the kids, outside and not inside on the phone and the computers and things. They’re getting exercise,” Smith said.
It’s always nice to ‘changeup’ things on your day off.
Smith says he’s glad he’s finally gotten out to visit the hometown of his 1994 teammate, Mike Mussina. The Little League World Series continues Saturday with the U.S. and international championship games in South Williamsport.