White Sox announcer with cerebral palsy finds his calling

Benetti was hired by the Chicago White Sox in 2016. He joined the team for spring training in Glendale, Arizona.

Story highlights

  • Jason Benetti was diagnosed with cerebral palsy at an early age
  • As a kid, he dreamed of becoming a Chicago White Sox sportscaster
  • In January, Benetti landed his dream job as the team's TV play-by-play announcer

(CNN)Jason Benetti was in elementary school when his teacher asked him to write an essay.

"The assignment was, 'I wonder what I'll be in 20 years,'" he recalled.
"I would like to be the White Sox sportscaster. As long as I don't look like Harry Caray," the boy wrote, referencing the famed voice of the Chicago Cubs.
    Benetti's childhood dream came true in January, when the 32-year-old was hired by the Chicago baseball team to be the TV play-by-play announcer. But it's a dream that almost never happened.
    Benetti was born 10 weeks premature. His mom and dad weren't sure whether they would be able to bring him home from the hospital.
    "I know how difficult it was on my parents to know it's touch and go at that point, whether or not I'm gonna make it," he said.
    Benetti made it out of the hospital and was later diagnosed with cerebral palsy, a neurological disorder that affects muscle coordination, movement and balance.
    "Essentially, it led to a couple different surgeries: eye surgery, heel cord surgery, hamstring surgery," he said.
    "Sometimes, I would show up after summer break [in elementary school] in a wheelchair or in a cast or in those 'Forrest Gump'-like inserts that don't actually just fly off your legs like in the movie," he joked.