The following was published this evening on TheOriginalMovie Facebook page and authored by Carlos Salidivia.


65 Years Later, Carl E. Stotz’s Worst Fears Are Finally Realized.

Excerpt from a Williamsport Sun-Gazette Editorial on June 5, 1992 (the day after Carl passed):

“We have always known Carl Stotz was not immortal, nor infallible. But he was one of the last great folk heroes of our time, a wonderfully golden presence that defined the goodness of the human spirit. His legacy will be that he cared, that a guy from down the street who is committed to a worthwhile goal can start a neighborhood campaign that eventually makes a difference in an uncaring world. And we thank him for the millions of children who have benefited physically and spiritually from this vision.

I’m one of those regular guys from down the street interested in making a difference in an uncaring world, except I know that the entire world is not uncaring, so this is for you.

My name is Carlos Saldivia and I’m the Executive Producer of the film project “The Original,” the story of Carl E. Stotz and the founding of Little League.

When I was a 10 yr old boy in the late 1960s, I grew up in a small middle-class community that was white, conservative, and sometimes very unforgiving towards me after I had emigrated from Venezuela.

There were two kinds of people there:
People that grimaced when they heard my name and looked at me suspiciously,

And the people that never flinched and treated me like any other kid.

THAT’S where I learned how to adapt to my surroundings and understand there were two kinds of people and to avoid certain ones..That was an easy adaptation.

But, it did not stop them from picking fights with me..They taunted me, harassed me, spat at me, set my books on fire, called me “Chiquita Banana,” “Coffee Bean,” and “Sugar Baron” ( I much preferred the latter because it made me sound like an aristocrat).

My Uncle, who had raised me with my Venezuelan Aunt, was a white man of German descent..He would walk into my bedroom and see my Aunt attending to my wounds and ask, “any broken bones?”

My aunt would nod no, and he would say, “patch him up and send him to school tomorrow”.

Then he would look me in the eye with the love for a son that up until the time I came into his life he did not have, and say -“tomorrow you will grow stronger”.

I understood.

It was a mile walk to school..It was only uphill on the way back..But those 5 words drove a fury in me that taught me how to stand up for myself, ON MY OWN TWO FEET, without someone coming to save me.

Racism wasn’t wasted on me.

It made me stronger, faster, better, wiser, more agile, more intelligent, more versatile, more clear thinking, more focused and yes, a more vicious adversary.

But the greatest gift racism gave me was a stratospheric sense of self-esteem..You will never tell me who I am.

It was then when I first came to Williamsport for Little League World Series Camp.

People that I’d never met, to a man, did not call me any of those names.

You know what they called me?


You know why?

Because teaching kids baseball is pure..And thats because baseball is pure.

Williamsport was THE place I finally found where I could come as a kid, to safely, be a kid..It was the last safeguard where a kid could go to be safe, innocent and pure.

Williamsport was the place where the rules were defined & equally applied.
Where there was freedom to achieve and fail.
Where there was victory and defeat that mirrored life.
Where there was the accomplishment of team and individual.

Most importantly, it was a place where baseball was played.

And baseball is UNFETTERED COMPETITION and the chance to try again tomorrow..

These are literally Carl’s own words!.

Baseball’s purity is the definition of America.

This is the baseball and this is the America that Carl bequeathed to his nephews and the rest of the world.

From Here.

From Williamsport, PA.

Now you understand why this film, regardless of the work that comes after, will be the greatest thing I ever do, and why I did it.

I owe those men here in Williamsport my life, and will never be able to adequately express my debt to them in 10 lifetimes.

Yesterday, Little League International (LLI) gave their full-throated support to a Marxist political organization that operates thru intimidation, threats, and violence to further their agenda in an effort to eliminate our way of life.

Our way of life in Williamsport, PA.

Our way of life in America.

A movement which seeks to persuade others with a pithy title and a guilt-ridden agenda.

Does anyone else see the tragic irony?..The institution that until yesterday embraced the purity of free-market competition has rejected capitalism for the equal distribution of socialism..Freedom has yielded the playing field to totalitarianism.

Has anyone at Little League International seen what has happened to my birth country?

This Marxist organization, now with LLI’s endorsement, wants our America to look like Venezuela.

Little League International and their Board, (which includes President & CEO Stephen Keener – a local Loyalsock product), chooses to have us believe that this organization they endorse is NOT what their detractors say it is, or who we know they are, but what Keener and Little League International say they are.

THIS IS EXACTLY, why Carl Stotz fought with the corporate entity led by Peter J. McGovern back in 1955..It was exactly his greatest fear now realized, that corporate precedence was more important than the worthwhile goal of teaching kids the purity of baseball, and the idea that today you can be a little bit better than yesterday as a ballplayer.

Instead they wish to replace that beautiful sentiment with the poisonous whispering in the ear of kids, “your father’s a racist,” first.

After all the sacrifices people in this city and around the world have made to have their kids get an opportunity to play baseball, what’s next?

10 year old’s kneeling & repudiating the flag & our anthem because they feel oppressed, or rather because they have been indoctrinated to feel so.

All this because LLI and Keener lack the courage to stand up and push back against a couple of people and other elites who are not interested in dialogue, but demand only compliance.

Carl Stotz was the better man for recognizing this contagion and reputiating it….He refused to stand with corporate elitists that thought the people that loved the purity of baseball in a kid’s childhood, had no value.

In my role as Executive Producer of this film, and as a home owning resident of Williamsport, I strongly denounce these actions by Little League International, Stephen Keener, and the rest of their Executive Board.

After 65 years, you have managed to realize Carl’s worst fears..
You have managed to tarnish his “golden presence” with a base alloy of political correctness.

You have replaced baseball with politics.

What sentence could be more damning than that?

You deserve only mockery and scorn, BUT THANK YOU, for letting us know exactly who you are, without us paying a horrible price.

Carlos Saldivia