Play ball! Little League celebrates Opening Day

Apr 30, 2023

Six-year-old Landyn Lucas has been on the Wareham Little League for two years, but to him, it felt like so much less than that. He wonders where the time has gone. 

Like many of his teammates at the Little League’s Opening Day on Saturday, April 29, Landyn’s favorite thing to do is hit the ball. 

“Why do you like baseball?” Landyn’s grandfather, Kevin Bugg, asked him. “Because your papa lets you hit balls at him?” 

“I only hit you a couple of times!” Landyn protested. 

Wareham’s young ball players celebrated the start of another season with games, a parade and plenty of hamburgers. 

“Like I said, I promised I wouldn’t cry,” said Wareham Little League President T.J. Croken, addressing the players and their families. 

Croken started the ceremonies with a moment of silence for Tobey Alford, the 14-year-old Wareham High School eighth grader who died on April 24 from injuries sustained in a car crash.

He also thanked the players’ families for their support of the league.

“You support the best little league in a 25-mile radius, I’m not gonna lie,” he said.

Olyvia Deolim and her dog George came to root for Olyvia’s son Eezanii, 9.

“It’s so much fun,” Deolim said. I think [Eezanii]’s grown a lot as a person. It’s definitely helped with his maturing, and having good role models around.”

Ten-year-old Jackson McKinley, a Little League rookie, is most looking forward to “being able to hit the ball really hard” this season. 

“I love watching baseball and I wanted to play,” Jackson said as he played catch with 9-year-old Little League veterans Xavier Pitts and Jacob Booth. 

“Didn’t your mom force you?” Jacob asked. 

“My mom wanted me to play,” Jackson replied, “but I did [too].”

Jacob also enjoys hitting the ball. 

“I have a lot of fun,” he said. “I love the sport. I love to cheer on my teammates when they’re at bat.”