One of the teams they play against is Westchester. There is a boy named Justin on that team who doesn't like Mike because Mike is better than he is. Justin's father is the coach of Westchester. He and a few other coaches think Michael is older than twelve because of his size and talent as a pitcher, so they want to see his birth certificate. Mr Gibbs , a man from child services, said they only have his baptismal certificate and that isn't good enough. Therefore Michael is not allowed to pitch until it is produced.
Michael is getting deeper and deeper into lies because he tells the man Mr. Gibbs that his dad will be home in a few days. Michael's best friend Manny convinces Carlos to let his uncle pretend that he is their father so they can get this picture thing over and not worry about it anymore.
Michael also met a girl he liked who told him her name was Ellie. One night while watching baseball on T.V. he saw her and the announcer said she was El Grande's daughter Maria. He was angry that she lied about who she was, and the next time saw her he said a lot of hurtful things. He realized this and went to the stadium to try to give a note to El Grande to give to his daughter. He caught El Grande's attention by singing a song in Spanish that he knew El Grande sang to Maria. He was able to give him the note.
Michael kept having to sit out of the games because they could not find his birth certificate in Cuba. One day, as he was helping coach the game, El Grande , Maria and Mr Gibbs came walking on the field. They had his birth certificate. Turns out Manny told Maria about Mike's story and her father knew people in Cuba who helped find the certificate. Mike was able to go in the game and they won. Now they were going to the playoffs and they got to play the game at Yankee stadium.