Pro or Little League, San Diego Baseball is Exciting

Sweetwater Valley Little League Baseball Team

The baseball games have been exciting, dramatic and can’t-miss TV.

That’s why it would be a crime to skip tonight’s contest, and few in San Diego will do so.

The Padres tangling with the Washington Nationals as the Friars fight for their playoff lives?

Uhm, that too. But any baseball fan worth his or her seamhead status will lather up the pine tar and grab the remote. Just how fast can one switch back and forth from the Padres to the Sweetwater Valley’s run in the Little League World Series?

(Side note in case The Mighty 1090 bosses are reading: Padres games are best experienced on radio, but that comparison didn’t fit the narrative).

Now back to live as in Sweetwater Valley Little League’s do-or-die game at 5 p.m.

The Bonita and Chula Vista boys of summer have captured the attention of area sports fans, even those not knowing which end of the bat to hold. Folks in my neighborhood not giving a hoot about the Padres, Chargers or anything else revolving around a scoreboard pepper me with questions about Sweetwater Valley.

That shows the impact of that intoxicating concoction of kids and sports. Throw in a dash of ESPN and Sweetwater Valley’s lineup which treats opposing pitchers like pinatas on Cinco de Mayo and it’s easy to see why interest is high.

“Boom & Bang” should be the team’s motto, as it hits home runs more often than the Chargers rip San Diego’s quest to keep them local.

At some point we need to cue Ted Leitner — are the bosses still reading because here comes another plug — to purr his signature “Cruuuushed” into the microphone and have it piped into the loud speakers in South Williamsport, Pa.

The Sultans of Sweetwater Valley get a chance at revenge tonight when wrestling with Pearland West, Texas. It was the young ‘uns from the Lone Star State which gave Sweetwater Valley its lone loss of the All-Star season.

“There’s no tomorrow without today,” Sweetwater Valley manager Ward Lannom said.

If ousting Texas, Sweetwater Valley two-steps into this weekend’s U.S. title game. Win there, and its 18 outs to the world title.

If pulling that rabbit from any Little League cap adorned with various pins, Sweetwater Valley becomes South County’s third team to claim the championship in seven years.

We doubt Parkview (2009) and Eastlake (2013) would mind sharing the glory with kids growing up hoping to be just like them, but first things first and we circle back to 5 p.m.

Antonio Andrade is on the mound with a memory that sticks like cotton candy to moist fingers.

Andrade started in the loss to Pearland West when his defense was sloppier than USC coach Steve Sarkisian at the Salute to Troy event.

It’s doubtful Sweetwater Valley plays hot potato with the baseball as it did when first facing Pearland West. If Sweetwater Valley tightens the defense, and bring their nuclear-powered bats, one has to like its chances.

Then again, predicting what 12- and 13-year-olds will do…well, good luck with that.

What we do know is we’ll be watching both games tonight. And, no kidding, it’s the kids we’ll be focused on.


+ Contact Jay Paris at Follow him on Twitter @jparis_sports.



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