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Boy with Down Syndrome needs little league baseball waiver – Tampa, Florida

Tampa, Florida 2022-05-05 23:23:44 –

Bradenton, Florida — Baseball is said not to cry.

But Randy Cody who When my son Cameron went out on the field with the Little League team at Lakewood Ranch, he inevitably wept.

“It’s the only place in his life where he really feels like any other kid,” Randy said.

An equalizer for a 13 year old child with Down Syndrome, usually playing with younger children.

“Academicly, Cameron is a first grader and sixth grader in kindergarten intelligence,” Randy said.

And after spending five years in the league, a teenager who just got the hang of hitting.

“I’ve been waiting for Cameron to hit the ball for the rest of my life. We’re practicing hard,” Randy laughed.

So you can imagine the excitement when he hit a home run in a recent game.

“I coach third base, and when he hits the ball, he stumbles around the rumbling and base,” Randy said. “His dexterity isn’t that great, so his adjustments aren’t that great, he’s not a real fast runner, but he’s coming and his face is covered in that huge sweat. Has a smile. Down Syndrome is in a league where typical kids try to hit the ball thrown at him, actually touch and handle what he earned to get on the base. Are you playing? Oh, that’s great. Ballfield. “

Cameron is also happy.

“I like home runs. I hit home runs, great, good. I like it. I like it,” he said.

However, shortly after Cameron finally started playing in recent games, the local league received safety complaints. Cameron is 13 years old because he is playing in the 7-11 year old division due to developmental delay.

To alleviate that concern, there are only a few games left in the regular season, and the league said Cameron is no longer allowed to bat.

Cameron was distressed by this decision and was unable to play in the rest of the regular season.

But on Wednesday, we got a call just an hour after ABC Action News interviewed Randy and Cameron. Randy told ABC Action News reporter Rochelle Alain that community protests overturned the league’s decision. Cameron is allowed to play in the playoffs without restrictions.

His team will win the playoff game 12-1 on Thursday and play another playoff game on Friday.

Randy Cody

This is a win for Cameron this season, but his father says he still has some concerns next season.

This is because Cody’s must file an exemption request with Little League International, the group that oversees the local league, to prevent Cameron from hitting mid-game play with other 13-year-old players.

“He can’t just play with children of his age,” Randy said.

He told ABC Action News that he was worried that the league would deny the waiver of his rights at a glance on paper.

He is currently calling on the league to work with him and the parents of other small leaguers with different abilities to help place them on the best team.

“The bigger problem isn’t this season,” Randy said. “The bigger question isn’t Cameron Cody. The bigger question is how to change what’s happening at the national level. [who is] Decide whether to allow age exemptions for children with disabilities at the national level, depending on their abilities, not on their birthdays written on paper. “

ABC Action News asked Little League International for comment. They sent us the following statement:

“The Little League Southeast region learned of this situation earlier this week and is working with Lakewood Ranch Little League to provide guidance and options for Cameron Cody to continue to participate in the Little League program.”

You can read more about Little League Baseball Disability policy here..



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