It is every young baseball fan’s dream to throw the first pitch at their team’s games, and this dream became a reality for 11-year-old Landis Sims. Landis has always strived to not let his disability come in the way of his passion for playing sports. When Landis got the call from the Yankees that he was going to be an honorary team member for the day, he was ecstatic and it proved to be a once in a lifetime opportunity that he would never forget.
The Indiana native was born with no hands or legs but never let that stop him from participating in games like any other kid his age. His mother, Amanda Haag spoke of how her son had a great passion for sports from a young age, watching him develop and grow each day, overcoming stereotypes. She stated that he has an “Watch me. I can do this, and I don’t tell me I can’t” kind of attitude. She also noted that in a run up to a game, her son is laid back but motivated.
In baseball, Landis can still bat, run bases and throw, putting his opponents to shame as he gives it his all. His hard work is had been a credit to him, but Landis’ effort can also be accredited to the Challenged Athletes Foundation, an organization which strives to provide opportunities for people with physical challenges, just like Landis.
For his first pitch, Landis asserted that he is not worried, having been to the Yankees spring training in Florida, together with visiting their facility a couple of times. He went on to say that although he is aware that it will be different pitching in front of a crowd, he will be practicing”a lot of long throws to see how accurate I can get it.”
Landis’ trip of a lifetime doesn’t stop there as he will take up a personal invitation to join former Yankee Nick Swisher at the MLB draft.