13-year-old umpire discusses brawl at youth baseball game

June 24, 2019 / Athletic AdministrationCoaching
As parents threw punches at one another during a youth baseball game last week in Colorado, 13-year-old umpire Josh Cardova watched in disbelief.

“It was very chaotic and I was scared not only for me, but the 7-year-olds who happened to be on the field at the time,” Cordova told KUSA-TV in Denver. “We never thought anyone would fight at a Little League Baseball game.”

The brawl on the field at Westgate Elementary School in Lakewood made national headlines last week. Video from the game (below) shows parents on the field throwing punches at one another, and it was reportedly Cardova’s strike zone that angered parents and even some coaches.

Cardova told KUSA-TV that coaches were “getting in his face” and asking him to change his calls. He also said he issued warnings over the use of profane language, but that didn’t do anything to ease tensions.

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“I thought maybe by issuing a warning everyone would just chill, take a step back and realize how stupid they were acting … but (I) guess not,” Cordova told KUSA-TV.

KUSA sat down with Cardova for a lengthy interview, in which it’s clear the young umpire tried to be the voice of reason to a group of immature adults. Cardova said he will continue umpiring games.

As far as those involved in the melee, five people were cited for disorderly conduct. The Bear Creek Junior Sports Association, which oversees the teams, said the parents have been banned, and the teams will no longer play this season.

“BCJSA would like to apologize to our members and community in regards to the events that took place this past weekend,” the organization’s executive board said in a statement. “BCJSA has ZERO tolerance for this type of behavior … PERIOD.  We are embarrassed, ashamed and angry that this has taken place.”

Read more from KUSA-TV.

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