Teenage girl baseball player making headlines

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by Matt Musil / KHOU 11 News

khou.com

Posted on June 21, 2013 at 12:12 AM

Updated Friday, Jun 21 at 3:00 PM

The pop on the fastball is impressive, but as free and easy as this pitcher's delivery is, it wasn't easy making the Banditos select team.

"Look -- I tried to cut her," said Banditos’ head coach Ray DeLeon. "She threw harder than half the boys that tried out. She throws a low 70 mph fastball. She's 6-foot-1 with an error of less than two. Hey, the girl is doing it."

Amber Tolleson, 13, is the first girl to ever be a member of the prestigious Banditos baseball organization.

"Well, I've been doing this over half my life now, and I really enjoy it," said Tolleson.

The boys on her team appreaciate a great baseball player.

"They think it's okay. If I can play, I can play," said Tolleson.

Her coach does too.

"My policy is I don't care if you're from Mars, if you're black, green, purple, fat, skinny,” DeLeon said. “If you get it done, you get it done and she's getting it done."

Amber plays with boys on the Banditos team, but she was just selected to play for a national all-girls baseball team.

Justine Siegal of Baseball for All recruited her.

"She's already throwing mid-70s so I see no reason why she can't break 80. She's got life on her ball with good arm action and she's going to be 6 feet tall,” Siegal said.

DeLeon said he's been criticized by some parents who believe Amber is taking playing time from their sons.

"Amber is playing better than your son, that's the reason she's playing," DeLeon said.

Tolleson wasn't thinking about breaking through any barriers when she started playing this game, but because of her on-the-field success, she's doing just that.

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