Following the death of a 9-year-old bat boy, after he was hit by a player's bat during a warm-up swing, the National Baseball Congress will not have bat boys or ball boys during the remainder of its World Series games.
Kaiser Carlile died Sunday after he was hit by a follow-through swing near the on-deck circle during the Liberal Bee Jays' game on Saturday. The boy was wearing a helmet.
“It’s out of respect for the Bee Jays,” said Kevin Jenks, the NBC’s general manager. “… It’s too emotionally charged. We’re going to remove it from the World Series.”
The organization is planning to honor the boy at games Monday and Tuesday.
Kaiser was a "kid, small in stature, who just wanted to be one of the guys," said Mike Carlile, a member of the boy's extended family and the Bee Jays' general manager. He said Kaiser was eager to get to the ballpark every day and interact with the players, noting that they'd "kid each other, gig each other."
Kaiser lived in Liberal, a city in southwest Kansas along the Oklahoma boarder.
Kaiser's parents met with the team's players after their son died, and urged them to keep playing in the series, Carlile said.
"We just lost a little, 9-year-old Bee Jay and it's incredibly sad," Carlile said. "No one wrote us a book to tell us how to do this. We're just dealing with it the best way we know how and that's to keep coming out and keep honoring Kaiser on the field."
The Liberal Bee Jays went on to win a game Sunday night, advancing the team to the semifinals.
"It is such an unfortunate accident, and all we can do is be strong for the family," team manager Adam Anderson said. "That's all they wanted us to do was go out there and play a good baseball game, and that's what we did."