(Rob Carr/ Getty Images)
Chicago’s Jackie Robinson West squad has advanced to the championship game of the Little League World Series.
The fantastic run of South Side Chicago’s Jackie Robinson West Little League baseball team has taken them to the championship game of the 2014 Little League World Series. Today, the Jackie Robinson West All-Stars defeated the team from Las Vegas, Nevada 7-5 and will face South Korea in Sunday’s final.
Hearing Chicago mentioned on the evening news instantly sends our minds to the rising body count in one of America’s most dangerous cities.
For nearly two weeks, the Jackie Robinson West All-Stars have turned talk about the Windy City from victims to victories. The team of all African-American young men have made a historic run to the Little League World Series final while restoring hope to a city torn apart by violence. Many of Chicago’s shooting victims are not much older than players on the team — there is no knowledge of how the violence has affected any of the players personally — but their resilience on the field when faced with adversity is undeniable.
We have no idea of the situations which await many of these young men and their coaches when they return home. For two weeks, they’ve escaped the sounds of gunfire and speeding ambulances at the most obscene hours. They’ve been seen and lived as just kids — rock stars even. Williamsport, Pa. has been a safe haven for these young men, as their character and talents have given us hope during a tumultuous two weeks.