The daily pitch from Sports Editor Matt Daniels: May 3, 2024

May 3—➜ . The 11-year-old son of Monticello baseball coach threw out the first pitch before Thursday's home game between the Sages and Rantoul. Why is this a big deal?

➜ 2. Because Wade, a sixth-grader at Monticello Middle School, was diagnosed with Cri-du-chat syndrome when he was 4 months old. Cri-du-chat, also known as 5p-, is a chromosomal condition that results when a piece of chromosome 5 is missing. Children with 5p- are born with low muscle tone, making simple tasks difficult.

➜ 3. Wade, though, can walk and run these days. The Sages honored Wade by wearing one sock up and one sock down during their baseball and softball games on Thursday to represent the deletion of a portion of the p arm of the fifth chromosome.

Raised by Monticello students before Thursday's Monticello-Rantoul baseball and softball games. All done to bring awareness for Cri-du-chat syndrome, also known as 5p-. All money goes to the 5p- Society to help hold an annual conference for families to learn about new therapies, strategies and research for 5p-.

➜ . Friday's opener at 6 p.m. features the annual Bleacher Bum BBQ before the Illini wear special Honor and Serve military-themed jerseys for Saturday's 3 p.m. game. The jerseys are available for auction two hours prior to Saturday's first pitch, with all proceeds benefitting Champaign, Urbana and the UI police Shop with a Cop programs.

➜ . The Illini will hold their annual World's Largest Tailgate celebration starting at 11 a.m. Saturday before the first pitch at 1 p.m. from Eichelberger Field in Urbana.

➜ . The 150th edition of the greatest two minutes in sports gets underway Saturday evening, with post time at 5:57 p.m. from Churchill Downs.

➜ the Cincinnati Reds.

➜ Tom Izzo, Sparky Anderson and John Madden.

➜ not paying attention to detail.