Small Stars: Meet this 7-year-old Valley pitching phenom

Posted at 6:47 PM, Mar 04, 2017
and last updated 2017-03-31 18:58:43-04

It's time for Fouhy's Small Stars! This week, we headed to the batting cages to introduce you to one of our brightest young baseball stars.

Meet Maddox Wahlenmaier, a 7-year-old pitching phenom who absolutely loves baseball.

He led his team, the Dirtbags, to a victory this weekend, making the Dirtbags one of the top three 9-and-under teams in the country!

"I'm going to be like a pitcher because I know that they have to be the ones on the field that keep the game going, 'cause if you don't have a pitcher, you can't play," Maddox said.

So, Maddox: It's tough being a pitcher. Why do you like that position so much?

"The pitchers are supposed to be the one on the field that keeps the inning going and makes the players happy that you can get through the inning and all that stuff," he said.

We get that! Keeping your teammates happy is extremely important! Any other reasons you can think of?

"Um, it's just because um, you get to, like, strike out people and all that stuff," he said.

Make no mistake about it: Maddox is a solid pitcher already. His fastball has been clocked at 50 miles an hour. And he's extremely accurate. His first pitch is a strike 75 percent of the time!

And his favorite memory so far?

"Knowing where I struck out a few 10 year olds, in a TV game," Maddox said. "They got really mad 'cause I'm only seven and they're like 10..."

I like it! Keep makin' 'em mad! So, what's it going to take to get you to the next level, and beyond?

 "I know that if I practice more then I'll get better, so then, when you do it, you'll get better at, like, at throwing strikes, and keeping your teammates, like, happy about you," he siad.

Is baseball a tough game to master?

"Baseball is like, one of the hardest sports, because when you get up to majors, if you don't throw at least 70 or 80, you can't make it," he said.

So, it's all about the practice time, huh? But how do you fit it all in with school and stuff?

"I would rather practice baseball than do my homework because I know that I it will make me better. Because then, you... If you don't hit in the majors, you can't play in the game," he said.

I'm not sure how your parents are going to feel about that statement, or your teachers, for that matter. But is the practice paying off? What are your best pitches?

 "I have a fastball and changeup," he said.

Definitely, two solid pitches to hang your hat on! And how about your goals?

"If I make it to the majors, I'll be like really proud of myself, because baseball's like a lot of hard work," Maddox said. "You have to do, like, a lot, to make it. If you want to be in the majors you have to hit and throw strikes."

Being such an accomplished player already, do you have any words of advice for us?

My dad always says just focus on one game at a time, and then you'll win it," he said.

Words to live by! Congratulations, Maddox, and continued success. You're this week's Small Star!