"The best thing that happened to me," Robert Stratta said, "was losing the Little League World (Series) championship."
Without Stratta, now a transplant surgeon at Wake Forest University's Baptist Medican Center, Chicago's Roseland North team might never have reached the 1967 title game.
Facing a tough team from Rota, Spain, in the quarterfinals, Stratta threw the eighth no-hitter in Little League World Series history. Roseland scored an unearned run in the fourth inning for a 1-0 victory in Williamsport, Pa.
"The run proved all Stratta needed," the Tribune reported the next day, Aug. 24. "Cool and deliberate on the mound, he was in...