The Little League World Series is everything that’s right with baseball.

The main tournament doesn’t kick off until Wednesday, but, even as the 10- to 12-year-olds compete at the regional level for their tickets to Williamsport, I’m reminded why the LLWS is my favorite sporting event of the year.

During the Southwest Regional tournament in Waco, Texas, on Tuesday, Pearland right-hander Kaiden Shelton had a pitch get away from him that hit opposing batter Isaiah Jarvis of Tulsa, Okla., in the head.

Jarvis fell to the dirt, and Shelton began to tear up. After being looked over by coaches, Jarvis took his base and then walked over to the mound.

If this was major league baseball, a batter approaching the mound after taking a pitch to the head would certainly be the beginning of a brawl. But this was Little League, so Jarvis threw his arms around Shelton and offered some comforting words.

“Hey, you’re doing great. Let’s go,” said Shelton, according to ESPN’s report on the viral moment.

Pearland won 9-4 to advance to Williamsport, but the score didn’t feel as important as the sportsmanship.

That’s the magic of Little League and the Series.

Sure, it’s baseball in its purest form, but it’s not really even about the sport. It’s about the way the kids play it — with unapologetic passion.

There’s no multi-million dollar contracts weighing on their shoulders or unwritten rules binding their hands from having any bit of fun.

No, at this level and on this stage in particular, it’s all about the fun the players bring to the table — and Little League Baseball does an incredible job at showcasing it.

It’s putting 10- to 12-year-olds in front of cameras for the first time and finding out not just their favorite baseball players, but their quirky pregame superstitions or their favorite TikTok dance or whether they can identify a fax machine despite being born in 2010.

It’s trading pins with complete strangers that become friends and sliding down The Hill at Lamade Stadium on scrap pieces of cardboard. It’s about dancing — so much dancing.

It’s about a kid from Georgia shaking hands with one from Chinese Taipei, or ping-pong matches between kids from California and Nicaragua, or a player from Australia embracing another from Japan.

International teams rejoin the action for the first time since 2019 — Covid-19 canceled the 2020 tournament and pandemic restrictions prevented international teams from traveling in 2021 — carrying with them that extra-special magic of bringing people from across the globe together through their love of baseball.

Even though baseball comes second, and the players come first.

These kids always come first.

It humanizes young athletes in a way MLB players typically aren’t afforded because of the business nature of the league.

Just read through the mission statement of Little League: “Little League believes in the power of youth baseball and softball to teach life lessons that build stronger individuals and communities.”

That’s clear by the way they run the World Series in Williamsport.

Not only do you get all the fun, but there’s also a spirit of community. The LLWS is almost entirely run by volunteers, from the umpiring crews to the concession stands to the hosts that help ensure each team has the best experience possible on and off the field.

Everyone is there because of the passion they share for baseball and the power it holds in bringing people together.

That doesn’t mean you won’t see incredible baseball in Williamsport.

I still remember just turning 13 and getting to watch the Blue Bombers from Chula Vista, Calif., defeat San Antonio, 12-2, in the U.S. championship game in 2009 in person. Chula Vista still holds the record for most home runs (19), most RBIs (57), most extra-base hits (35) and best slugging percentage (.902) by a single team in the LLWS.

However, I may be biased. I befriended the catcher from that team, and we’re still close. It’s all because of Little League.

I also remember the excitement of experiencing the record-breaking crowds that Keystone Little League brought to Lamade in 2011. The team from Clinton County, only about an hour drive from Williamsport, shocked even themselves by pushing through the losers’ bracket to face California in the U.S. championship game.

The day after my 18th birthday in 2014, Mo’ne Davis became the first girl to pitch a winning game in the LLWS when she and the Taney Dragons Little League from Philadelphia shut out Nashville, 4-0 — making it the first shutout pitched by a girl in the LLWS, as well. At just 13, she was throwing 71 mph fastballs — the equivalent to a 93 mph pitch thrown on a full-sized diamond, according to ESPN.

It was moving to see her impact on the sport and the standard she set for little girls.

If you haven’t made it out to Williamsport to experience the LLWS, do it. I promise you won’t regret it.

In the shadow of the circus of pay disputes, lawsuits and the overall circus that is MLB, the Little League World Series reminds fans that, at its roots, baseball is still good and fun. The sport needs exactly that right now — big plays and even bigger smiles.