Lots of kindergarten-aged Little League players tend to spend a lot of game time kicking up dust or spitting in the outfield.
But even as a little guy still learning the game, Billy Larrimore never fooled around on the field. In all the years he has played baseball, he has never tried to wiggle out of attending baseball practice, either.
That level of dedication has paid off for this quiet guy who has grown up on Pine Island. This fall, Billy's dreams come true. He has been awarded a scholarship and will place college ball at Brevard Community College in Melbourne.
Islander and Baker High senior Billy Larrimore is going to attend Brevard Community College on a baseball scholarship. Michael Pistella
Of course, the family is thrilled. But it's no surprise that Billy's achieved this longtime goal.
By the time he was nine years old, this left-handed pitcher had the attention of family members, other Little League parents and coaches too.
"Since he started playing baseball at five years old, he always said he wanted to go to college and play baseball in college," said Jo Marie Larrimore, Billy's mother.
Billy's older sister, Christie Larrimore, 22, whispered the prediction while her only brother was still in elementary school.
"She leaned over while we were watching him play and said, 'He's goin' pro,'" Jo Marie Larrimore said with a smile. "Billy just has this natural ability as a pitcher. He's always had it."
As a graduating senior at Ida Baker High School, Billy's schedule is difficult for most people to even remember, much less try to live. But he takes it all in stride, adding that when he doesn't have a game or practice, he works out at a gym in Cape Coral.
With the goal of one day opening a gym of his own, where he can offer clients nutritional supplements also, Billy plans to study health and sports nutrition along with business management.
"But I would also love to play for the Tampa Bay Rays," Billy said with a shy grin.
He has grown up in a sports-centered family. His older sister played softball on travel teams and Billy, of course, followed that level of commitment with baseball. His mom is the secretary in the athletic department at Ida Baker High School and his dad, Tim Larrimore, is a Pine Island fireman and an avid hunter and fisherman.
"It's overwhelming," Tim Larrimore said. "I'm going to watch my son play college baseball."