The 2022 Little League World Series baseball tournament made headlines because of an unfortunate controversy between Oregon and Washington. They were tied 2-2 in the bottom of the last inning. Washington was up to bat with a runner on first and a chance to win the game.
The controversy erupted when Washington’s next batter hit the ball down the third-base line into foul territory. The third-base umpire immediately signaled a foul ball. At the same time, the home plate umpire signaled a fair ball. The Oregon players thought the play was dead and didn’t field the ball. The Washington runner believed the play was still alive, so he rounded the bases and scored.
The game was eventually decided by the home plate umpire who watched a replay and ruled the hit a fair ball. The run counted. Washington won the game.
Needless to say, many people believed that something more than just the ball had gone foul in that game. Fairness itself had taken a hit. Probably so. But unfairness is precisely why good character is so important for our children to develop.
Unfairness is a sad reality of life. For all of us. We lose when we shouldn’t have. We study, practice, and do the right things, yet struggle anyway.
Successful living isn’t the result of life bouncing exactly the way we think it ought to … but having the character to do what’s right even when it doesn’t.