To the critics who bemoan this era of young athletes who choose at a young age to just focus on one sport, be advised not to use Matthew Doyle as an example.
True, the one-time standout at Daniel Hand High School in Madison, Conn., at around age 11 opted for golf and put baseball aside. But it wasn’t his call. “I really had no choice; the doctor didn’t think I could handle both,” said Doyle, now 19 and a sophomore-to-be at Elon University in North Carolina where he plays on the golf team.
The issue was something called Legg-Calve-Perthes disease, which occurs when too little blood is supplied to the ball portion of the femoral head (hip joint).
Doyle said he was diagnosed with the disease when he was 2, but it didn’t really start to be a hindrance till about sixth grade. “Every other day I had to use crutches,” he said. “One day I’d be OK. The next day I’d wake up and it (the hip) would be hurting so bad I’d use crutches.”