Oakland A’s Play Hardball To Win Distraught Young Fan’s Allegiance

It’s always tough to see your favorite player leave your favorite team. One young Toronto Blue Jays fan took it especially hard when the team traded infielder Brett Lawrie — but her sad story has a happy ending.

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Transcript :

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

And here’s something that can be tough for both adults and children to absorb. Those who are dedicated baseball fans, what do you do when your favorite team cuts ties with your favorite player?

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

Some take it in stride, others take it like 6-year-old Amelia Lyttle from Vancouver. A few weeks ago, Amelia’s favorite team, the Toronto Blue Jays, traded her favorite player, infielder Brett Lawrie, to the Oakland A’s.

(SOUNDBITE OF YOUTUBE VIDEO, “BRETT LAWRIE FOR JOSH DONALDSON TRADE REACTION”)

AMELIA LYTTLE: (Crying) I don’t want to cheer for a different team.

ALEX LYTTLE: You don’t have to cheer for a different team just ’cause Brett Lawrie went to a different team.

AMELIA: (Crying) But I want to cheer for Brett Lawrie.

BLOCK: As you can hear, Amelia was devastated after her father broke the news.

(SOUNDBITE OF YOUTUBE VIDEO, “BRETT LAWRIE FOR JOSH DONALDSON TRADE REACTION”)

AMELIA: (Crying) I’m positive they won’t trade him back some day. That guy’s going to be too good. They’re never going to want to trade him back.

LYTTLE: Well, we’ll see. We’ll see if we get – maybe we’ll get Brett Lawrie back someday.

AMELIA: We won’t.

BLOCK: As you may have gathered, Amelia’s reaction to the trade was recorded and posted on YouTube by her father.

SIEGEL: And of course, Amelia’s sadness went viral. The video has been viewed almost 300,000 times. Brett Lawrie got wind of the video, and he paid a personal visit to Amelia before he left for Oakland.

BLOCK: And the story gets even better for Lawrie’s biggest fan. Just after Christmas, a care package arrived from the Oakland A’s with A’s T-shirts, hats.

SIEGEL: And a note that said, we were so touched to see how much you enjoy watching Brett play, and we promise to take care of him in Oakland.

BLOCK: And that was enough, as her father explained to us today, to make Amelia a lifelong A’s fan.

LYTTLE: She was wearing her T-shirt around, wearing her hat around. She gave myself one and my wife one. She says, you know, we can all have one. We can all be Oakland A’s fans.

SIEGEL: After the package arrived, her dad Alex tweeted a photo of beaming Amelia with her green and gold A’s swag and in the caption, thanks from Amelia #converted. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.