2018 MLB Little League Classic: Mets vs. Phillies start time, TV, stream info, things to know

Last August, Major League Baseball introduced the Little League Classic -- a primetime game hosted in Williamsport, Pennsylvania that coincides with the Little League World Series -- as part of a renewed partnership and focus on encouraging youth participation in the sport.

The Little League Classic will make its return on Sunday night, with the New York Mets taking on the Philadelphia Phillies. Here's how you can watch the game:

When: Sunday, 7 p.m. ET
TV: ESPN
Streaming: WatchESPN

Now on to all the things you need to know in advance of the Little League Classic.

No, they aren't playing on a Little League Field

As fun as Rhys Hoskins teeing off inside a park built for children would be fun, that's not what will be going on come Sunday.

Rather, the Mets and Phillies will play at BB&T Ballpark at Historic Bowman Field, a minor-league park that currently houses the Phillies' Class A affiliate.

The dimensions were altered ahead of last year's Little League Classic to make the park more cozy. As such, BB&T Ballpark now permits 323 feet down the left field line, 411 out to center, and 331 to right. For comparison purposes, Citizens Bank Park offers similar dimensions: 329 to left, 401 to straightaway center, and 330 to right. Not quite 1:1, but close.

Preview of Players Weekend

In advance of Players Weekend, scheduled for next Friday through Sunday, both the Mets and Phillies will don their alternate threads -- you know, the ones with the nicknames on the back. Even ESPN's announcers will partake:

In addition to serving as an appetizer for next weekend, the different look benefits a good cause. All game-worn attire will be auctioned off afterward, with the proceeds going toward MLB-MLBPA's Youth Development Foundation, a joint initiative founded in 2015 with the intent to improve amateur baseball and softball programs across North America.

Homecomings galore

We mentioned earlier that BB&T Ballpark hosts a Phillies' minor-league affiliate, the Williamsport Crosscutters. It used to house the Mets' Double-A affiliate back in the 1960s and then once more in 1991. While no active player was a member of that team, plenty have appeared with the Crosscutters during their prospect days:

Phillies

Mets

That's 10 players in total who know their way to the ballpark.

Little League alum

The point of the weekend is to celebrate Little League Baseball. Plenty of big leaguers partaking were once youngsters suiting up for Little League teams.

Todd Frazier is the most accomplished Little League player on either roster. He went 4 for 4 and was the winning pitcher in the 1998 Little League World Series championship game. Michael Conforto played in the 2004 edition of the tournament, and Zack Wheeler played Little League, just not for a team who qualified for the Little League World Series.

On the Phillies side, Scott Kingery is the only player to partake in a Little League World Series, though Pat Neshek, Vince Velasquez, Nick Williams, Zach Eflin, Jake Arrieta, Odubel Herrera, and Cesar Hernandez are all Little League graduates.

Williamsport's rich history

Given everything stated above, it's probably not a shocker that Williamsport has produced big-league talent. Here's a list of players born there:

·        Butch Alberts
·        Fred Applegate
·        Pat Daneker
·        Kris Keller
·        Frank Lobert
·        Johnny Lush
·        Don Manno
·        Jacob May
·        Jamie McAndrew
·        Mike Mussina
·        Jason Phillips
·        John Sullivan

CBS Sports Staff

R.J. Anderson joined CBS Sports in 2016. He previously wrote for Baseball Prospectus, where he contributed to five of the New York Times bestselling annuals. His work has also appeared in Newsweek and... Full Bio

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