Five of Eight MLB Playoff Teams Have Little League Baseball World Series Alums
Here’s the list:
Jim Brower, Atlanta Braves
A graduate of the East Tonka Little League in Minnetonka, Minn., Jim pitched last season for the San Francisco Giants. Jim led his team to the 1985 Little League Baseball World Series, getting a win as a pitcher against a Saudi Arabia team. He finished the Braves’ 2005 regular season with a 3-3 record and a 5.37 ERA.
Sean Burroughs, San Diego Padres
A graduate of Long Beach (Calif.) Little League, Sean plays third base for the Padres. He is the only player this year to have a chance to accomplish something no other player has: To be on a world championship team in Little League Baseball and Major League Baseball. Sean’s Little League team won back-to-back Little League Baseball World Series titles in 1992 and ’93. He batted .250 in 2005, and he has a .286 lifetime batting average.
Jason Marquis, St. Louis Cardinals
A graduate of the South Shore Little League of Staten Island, N.Y., Jason faced another Jason from the Little League Baseball World Series last year when Jason Varitek batted against him twice in the Major League Baseball World Series. Jason Marquis helped his team to a third-place finish in the 1991 Little League Baseball World Series. He was 13-14 for the Cardinals in 2005, with 100 strikeouts in 207 innings.
Gary Sheffield, New York Yankees
A graduate of the Belmont Height Little League of Tampa, Fla., Gary patrols right field and is one of the most feared hitters in baseball. Gary’s team lost the 1980 Little League Baseball World Series championship game to Chinese Taipei. Gary batted .291 with 34 home runs and 123 RBI for the Yankees in 2005.
Jason Varitek, Boston Red Sox
A graduate of the National Little League of Altamonte Springs, Fla., Jason is the starting catcher and team captain for the defending world champions. Jason played in the 1984 Little League Baseball World Series, losing in the world title game to a team from Seoul, South Korea. Following last year’s World Series win, Jason joined Ed Vosberg as the only players to appear in the Little League Baseball, College, and Major League Baseball World Series. Jason hit .281 with 22 homers and 70 RBI for the Red Sox in 2005.
Other Little League Baseball World Series alums who played on a Major League Baseball team this year include: Wilson Alvarez (Coquivacoa Little League, Maracaibo, Venezuela, 1982), and Chin-Feng Chen (San-Hau Little League, Tainan County, Chinese Taipei, 1990) of the Los Angeles Dodgers; Jason Bay (Trail Little League, British Columbia, Canada, 1990) of the Pittsburg Pirates; Dan Wilson (Barrington Little League, Barrington, Ill., 1981) of the Seattle Mariners; and Guillermo Quiroz (Coquivacoa Little League, Maracaibo, Venezuela, 1992) of the Toronto Blue Jays.
A total of 29 players have played in the Little League Baseball World Series and later played Major League Baseball. There are 13 Little League Baseball graduates enshrined in the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum in Cooperstown, N.Y.