Two Young Women in Connecticut Make Their Mark in Baseball

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Maybe you've heard of picking daisies in the outfield, but in Connecticut, it seems lilies grow on these baseball diamonds.

Lillian Martineau and Lily Woodworth, two high school sophomores, Martineau at Lewis Mills and Woodward at Glastonbury, both planted their roots in the game at the same time as all their teammates.

“I grew up in a baseball family,” said Martineau. "I played with the boys in Little League.”

“I was kind of just around baseball a lot growing up,” said Woodworth, whose dad is the baseball coach at Wesleyan University.

But come middle school, no one asked the boys if they were going to switch to softball.

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Lily Woodworth

“I didn't even have to think about it, I knew I wanted to play baseball at the high school level,” said Woodworth.

Woodworth had an easy transition but Martineau faced some pushback.

“I went to the nurse's office to get my blue card to play and she was like 'Oh no, you can't' and I almost cried," said Martineau. “I didn't want to make a big deal of it but at the same time, I wanted to play baseball.”

Martineau's parents had no problem if they had to make a big deal. A visit to the administration, some lawyers and finally, their seventh-grader could play school baseball.

Now, four years in, Martineau and Woodworth have heard it all from visiting teams wondering why there’s a girl on the field.

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Lillian Martineau

“I know that I’m the first girl they've played against and it's like, 'whatever, you're a high school boy I don't even care,'” said Woodworth.

What they do hear are the cheers from the other women in baseball and the men who support them. Martineau, who uses Twitter to share her progress, even got some hitting advice from Wade Boggs.

“I mean, I downloaded Twitter just to get video out there,” said Martineau. “I didn’t really expect to have people reaching out to me through that.”

There's the offered advice and the requests for it, too.

“Some parents have reached out to me saying that their daughters have watched my videos,” said Martineau.

“That like makes me want to keep playing, it warms my heart,” said Woodworth.

It's a reminder that soon enough, there won't only be lilies on these diamonds.

“There's so many girls my age who are just really good and I feel like one of us is going to go really far,” said Woodworth. “It's exciting to see where that goes.”

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