By Curtis Driscoll
This year is the 60th anniversary of the 1957 Mexico team winning the Little League® Baseball World Series. In 1957, the upstart team from Monterrey’s Industrial Little League beat a team from California and became the first team from outside the United States to win the Little League World Series.
The win was made possible by a perfect game from Angel Macias. Mr. Macias, was inducted into the Little League Hall of Excellence this year, six decades to the day when he pitched the one and only perfect game in a Little League World Series Championship game.
Mr. Macias and teammate and fellow Little League Hall of Excellence enshrinee Jose “Pepe” Miaz, are among the many players who have inspired the Guadalupe Treviño Kelly Little League team representing the Mexico Region to try and achieve the improbable once again.
“They are one of the few teams from Mexico that won the World Series, and we want to do the same,” said Erick Vazquez, a pitcher and first baseman for Mexico’s national champions.
Vazquez and his team had the opportunity to meet and take photos with players from the 1957 team this year during their Little League International Tournament run.
According to Mexico Manager Jose Manuel Espinoza Urrea, the team has watched the Perfect Game and Los Gigantes Pequenos (Little Giants), two movies that depict the success of the 1957 Monterrey team. After seeing those films, the boys view the Mr. Macias, Pepe Miaz and other members of that team as pioneers and role models they want to emulate.
“Every Mexican gets inspiration from watching the movie,” said Mr. Urrea.
Mexican Region Champion center fielder Issac Miranda and Vazquez had an opportunity to talk with members of the ’57 Industrial Little League team about their experiences in Williamsport prior to coming to the United States. The Monterey team used the opportunity to encourage them to never to give up and to give it they're all.
“They told us just to stay focused on doing our best, and don't make a lot of mistakes,” said Miranda.
Miranda and Vazquez are part of a new generation of children who have been inspired by the 1957 team to take up baseball. This year’s team hope to continue Mexico’s a long history of Little League World Series success. Their next step is playing in the International Semifinal game against Canada for a chance to play Japan in the championship game of the International bracket.