Lack of playing time is sticking point between youth baseball player and his mom

Frustrated Red Team infielder Andy Landecker told reporters yesterday that he is demanding more playing time, and that he is prepared to talk with other teams if he is not satisfied.

“I’m tired of getting dissed by the front office. It’s time players at my level get more respect,” said the 10 year old in a cliché-laden press conference held on the Landeckers’ front stoop. “I’m here to set the record straight, jack, and it’s time for this big dog to kick it up a notch. It’s showtime!”

The current confrontation began during last week’s 19-12 loss against Purple Team, when Andy’s mom/manager Judy Landecker pulled him from the lineup in the 3rd inning in favor of 9 year-old rookie Danny Dupopple. “My mom says she pinch-hit for me so everybody would get a chance to play. My mom is an idiot. She doesn’t know anything about baseball. I hope she trades me out of my family, not just my team.”

Judy Landecker responded to her son’s comments by telling reporters “Sorry, I can’t talk now, I’m on my way to the store. We’re out of juice boxes and duplex crème cookies. I’ll be back in a little bit.”

Andy’s storied career has been marked by strong play on the field and a strong will off it. Mentored by his father, Barry “Bubba” Landecker, Andy combines Pete Rose’s hustle and Ty Cobb’s sheer viciousness. (Bubba Landecker was banned for life from Green Lake Youth Baseball last year; while Red Team’s third base coach, he spit on opposing players, cursed out several Park District umpires and once threatened to pistol-whip parents rooting for Orange Team). “Andy once begged for the chance to pitch to a player on Blue Team just so that he could throw at the player’s head,” said father Bubba. “I was so proud of that boy. He’s a natural.”

Yet Andy’s talent is undeniable: in his last three games, Landecker hit 5 for 7 with two doubles and two walks. “When he pinch hit for me, Dupopple almost got hit by a pitch and he wet his pants,” Landecker charges. “That’s why we lost games, cause of stuff like that. Actually, all of my teammates smell really bad.”

Even with his brash demeanor, scouts from other youth baseball teams are salivating at the prospect of bringing Landecker over to their squad. Green Team manager Jerry Sussel told reporters that “when you get the chance to add somebody like Andy Landecker to your team, you don’t ask why he prayed aloud for his mom to be eaten by ants, you sign him up.”

Red Team fans have a soft spot for their player’s boisterousness, though some Red Team players would be glad to see Landecker go, even at the risk of having a weaker baseball team. “I know this kid at school and his brother is in high school and he could beat Andy up,” Danny Dupopple said in a phone interview. “Hold on a sec, I gotta put clean underwear on.”

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