Larry Whitaker started playing baseball when he was 5 years old. He was a gifted young player, able to elevate his game enough to make travel teams by the time he was 11. But everything the young man dreamed of nearly fell to pieces on the Fourth of July 2005 when a bottle rocket misfired and hit Whitaker in his left eye. His cornea was scratched, and his iris was shattered. His right eye was also damaged. Suddenly, he was legally blind. Doctors said he would never play baseball again.