Yankees Sign Boy Born with No Arms or Legs
On Monday, the New York Yankees signed Landis Sims to a one-day contract. No, the Yankees are not lining up Sims to be the replacement for C.C. Sabathia. Sims is simply a 10-year-old boy who’s been dealt a tough hand in life, and the Yankees were trying to give him a day he’d never forget.
Landis was born without arms or legs, but he wears prosthetic legs and special equipment on his arms that allow him to play Little League baseball back in his hometown of Elizabeth, Indiana. He typically plays middle infield for his Little League team, and on Monday the Yankees hosted him at their spring training complex in Tampa Bay, Florida and made him a part of the team for one day.
Decked out in pinstripes with Sabathia standing beside him, smiling, Landis signed on the dotted line, making him a full-fledged Yankee for one day. Landis then proceeded to take batting practice, and with the other Yankee players looking on, the young boy smacked one ball after another right up the middle.
Afterwards, Landis spent some quality time one-on-one with a few of the players, including slugger Alex Rodriguez. By day’s end, Rodriguez had gifted to Landis a signed bat, reading, “To a great teammate.”
This was actually Landis’ second time visiting the Yankees during spring training. He and his family first met Yankees’ manager Joe Girardi two years ago, with the skipper inviting them to visit the Yankees’ complex in Tampa.
It was during that visit that Landis met his favorite player, now-retired shortstop Derek Jeter. On that occasion, Landis and Jeter actually ended up talking about basketball, which is usually considered the preferred past time in his home state of Indiana.
When the day was over, Girardi lauded Landis as a “special kid,” saying, “He’s overcome extraordinary obstacles to be the kid he came to be. That’s special for all of us.”