Wednesday night the Philadelphia Phillies took on the Seattle Mariners in front of a crowd of 25,157. Just 181 miles away in Williamsburg, PA, Mo’ne Davis and the Taney Dragons from Philadelphia played in front of a staggering crowd of 34,128.
While Davis couldn’t repeat her two-hit shutout performance from earlier in the tournament, Davis and the Philly team highlight what has been so far one of the most memorable Little League World Series (LLWS) in recent
history. Davis’ surge onto the main stage of the sports world has been remarkable and shows the potential for a progressive future in professional sports.
Just on the heels of Becky Hammon becoming the first full-time female assistant coach in professional sports, the bold statements that Mo’ne has made have captivated the world. Her wish to become a point guard at the University of Connecticut have caught the attention of everyone, including UConn coach Geno Auriemma who paid his respects by calling the young star personally. In her interview with Sports Illustrated, Mo’ne said, “Now, it’s baseball. Next, hopefully, it will be me in a UConn jersey.”
Outside of the sports world, everyone from Larry King to Brian Williams is talking about the Little League World Series and Mo’ne is a big reason why. Newlyelected MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred is already answering questions about his thoughts on the potential for women to play in the MLB.
Davis and her team’s magical run came to an end on Thursday as they were eliminated from the tournament after a 6-5 loss to the team from Chicago, Ill. However, to say the phenom from Philly has not had an impact is wrong.
Her mere presence at the LLWS was enough to gain national attention and with her strong performance on the field, she was able to get a spot on the cover of Sports Illustrated, becoming the first LLWS player to grace the magazine’s cover.
Davis’ absence from the US Championship game may hurt the TV ratings but the attention that has been brought to her and the LLWS is something that will not be soon forgotten. Her play on the field and the attention that she has brought to female athletes is all just in a day’s work for the 13 year old; while today she may be on every TV screen across the country, in just a few weeks, she’ll be back to school.