Mo’Ne Davis owns the world right now, but there is an ominous undertone to the Little Leaguer’s amazing success. Is all of this acclaim healthy for a 13-year-old? Or is she just the latest shooting star in a galaxy of here-today-gone-tomorrow celebrities?
No one wants to deal with these questions because the Taney Dragons are nobly filling a huge hole in our sports calendar. Instead of the depressing Phillies, we have an exciting new team to cheer, and especially a little girl with a big arm and a bigger heart. The Dragons are the next big thing in sports.
When Davis blew a 70-mile-per-hour fastball past a defenseless hitter to complete her shutout last Friday in Williamsport, ESPN was every bit as excited as her delirious mom. They had a star to promote, an attraction that would build ratings for the Little League World Series. Suddenly, Davis is not just some girl playing baseball; now she’s helping the Disney Corp. make budget.
Mo’Ne Davis is a charming young athlete whose every move is being analyzed on national TV by former big-leaguer Barry Larkin, whose every pitch is being timed by radar guns, whose every word is being processed to build an image, market a product. Is she really ready for this?
Davis herself pointed out the other day that she never imagined she would be a role model at 13. She shouldn’t be. Davis should be a little kid playing baseball without the pressure of a sports world always looking for something new to sell.
Enjoy this Taney Dragons story at your own peril, Philadelphia. More times than not, these fairy tales don’t end well.