Baseball is America’s past time. Miracle League has three fields and 200 players. They have disabilities, but they’re not defined by that.
“I think this is an organization that has taken persons with disabilities and given them something to look forward to, to strive to,” Shirley Godwin, a chairwoman with Miracle League of Pensacola said. “They’re playing baseball just like anybody else.”
One mother of a disabled player talked about her experiences with baseball growing up, and her emotions when she found out her daughter could have the same experience.
“I always worried that Sierra would not have that when we realized she had a disability,” said Crystal Lane, whose daughter has played in the league since day one. “But when the miracle league was created, then that was her opportunity to have the same thing I did growing up.”
Players young and old hit base hits, home runs, and grand slams every single game. Parents and coaches are seeing changes in the players.
“She stays on the base, she tries to catch the ball, she knows to run the base, I mean she knows how to play baseball,” said Lane. “She didn’t know how to back then and she just wanted to run all over the field.”
Volunteers that coach the teams described situation after situation where players gained more physical mobility through the sport.
“Kids that were walking with walkers when they came out here that are actually walking on their own now,” said Chuck Condon, a coach. “The transformation over the years has been really amazing.”
They may not be taking the diamond, but some of the parents in the stands said they’re learning just as much as their children from Miracle League.
“We’re all the same, we all can just have that comfort level with each other immediately, there’s no holding back,” Lane explained.
A level of comfort they only hope to extend to more and more families for seasons to come.
“All we wanna do is continue to grow,” Godwin said. “We’ll build as many fields as we need and get as many volunteers as we need, as long as we grow and more people can play.”
Anyone and everyone is invited to come to Miracle League games to cheer on the teams. For more information on Miracle League, you can click here.