Jim Boulton is known for being a fan of Rochelle Little League, but this year he is also known for awarding trophies to the players.
He can be seen on the sidelines of every Major League Boys Division game, and he’s frequented games for the last eight years. This year, along with being in charge of the scoreboard, Boulton has kept a clipboard and pencil with him, tallying home runs and logging big plays. After nearly every game, Boulton awards a trophy to a deserving player.
When asked why he does it, Boulton gave a couple reasons. He also reflected on his moment of fame last year when the players awarded him a trophy for “Most Valuable Fan.”
“When they gave me that trophy I cried,” Boulton said. “I couldn’t even thank them. Why do I do this? Because I want to. I want to give a little incentive for the kids.”
Boulton flips the pages fastened to the clipboard to indicate how he has been keeping track of the plays, whether it was for superb pitching, leadership, or an exciting game. He also notes why he game someone a trophy.
Boulton reflected on his years of fandom, noting this year’s graduating Rochelle Township High School seniors were only 11-year-olds when he first came on the scene.
When he’s not at the Little League field, Boulton keeps busy playing bridge or cutting the grass at Steward Church. He’s also a member of the Rochelle Garden Club. He admits he is also known as the No. 1 wrestling fan at RTHS, well known by all of the coaches and players.
Either way, Boulton enjoys being on the sidelines.
“I root for everybody, all 72 kids,” Boulton said. “Overall I think these boys will go quite a long way this year. My goal is to see them win a World Series.”