George Springer III is a standout young talent who has people buzzing in Houston and beyond, after he helped the Astros advance to the 2015 MLB Playoffs for the first time in 10 years. But he might not even be the most accomplished Springer in the sport.
It’s hard to imagine a family with more baseball and softball accomplishments than the Springers. The patriarch, George Springer Jr. used his experience playing in the 1976 Little League Baseball® World Series with Forestville Little League from Bristol, Conn., to ignite a passion that has led the Springer family to be one of the most decorated baseball and softball families in the world.
George Jr. and his wife, Laura (who played softball growing up in Simsbury, Conn., and later became a competitive gymnast), raised their three children in New Britain, Conn. All of them starting their playing days at Walicki Little League, where George Jr. became League President in 1997, later being named to the Little League® International Advisory Board, which he served on from 2000 to 2003. Those three children, daughters, Nicole and Lena, along with, George III, have gone on to have great success in their sports, playing for national teams and NCAA Division 1 programs.
Little League recently caught up with the Springer siblings, and here’s what they had to say about Little League:
George Springer III
Starting right fielder for the Houston Astros; 2011 Big East Player of the Year and All-American at the University of Connecticut; member of the 2010 Team USA College Team.
“I remember just about everything from my Little League experience. It was awesome. I got a chance to play on [high-quality] fields and stadiums as a kid. We got to play under the lights and have fun playing the game. It is fun to know that my sisters and I were all in the same league, representing our town, getting a shot to play. My advice for Little Leaguers is to enjoy it. Have fun playing this great game. Enjoy every second of it. The game, as you get older, it gets harder. But the most important thing is that you have fun.”
Assistant Coach for the Southern Connecticut State University softball team; 4-year All-Conference performer as a collegian and graduate of Central Connecticut State in 2013; member of the 2012 Puerto Rico National Softball Team.
“I loved Little League, and I am still in contact with all the girls I played with. We had a 9/10 All-Star team that didn’t make it far, but we had fun. We played on a field that we called ‘the hole’ because it appeared like it was down in a hole because of a hill. But it was the only field that had lights, so we would all go down there. People would bring food. It was the thing to do on Friday nights. I went there last year with my mom, and that memory sticks.”
Junior pitcher for the Ohio State University Buckeyes softball team. Played as a freshman at the University of Central Florida and competed in the 2014 NCAA College Softball Tournament; member of the 2013 Puerto Rico Junior National Softball Team.
“Little League was my first love. I had dreams of being where I am now when I played Little League Softball, and when I go through a tough workout, I think of me as a 7-year-old, wanting to be where I am, and it pushes me through. If it wasn’t for Little League, I would not have the opportunities I have now to travel the country, and meet so many people. Little League is so much more than just putting a kid out there with a glove and bat, it’s about development as a player and person. Little League has had a tremendous impact on my life, and I am forever grateful for the experience.”