Las Vegas hands South Philadelphia’s Mo’ne Davis her first Little League World Series loss

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Mo’ne Davis and the South Philadelphia Taney Dragons took their first loss Wednesday evening in the double-elimination Little League World Series.

Davis struck out six batters and walked just one, but a powerful team from Mountain Ridge Little League of Las Vegas got to her for six hits — including an RBI triple and a two-run home run by Dallan Cave — in an eventual 8-1 defeat in Williamsport, Pennsylvania.

Davis made it just 2 1/3 innings before reaching her predesignated pitch count of 55. Go ahead and blame it on the old Sports Illustrated jinx.

Las Vegas now advances to the United States Championship game on Saturday. Davis and her Mid-Atlantic squad can get there with a win over Jackie Robinson West on Thursday in the consolation bracket.

Wednesday night’s game drew a record crowd of 34,128 fans to Lamade Stadium in Williamsport. That is higher than the average 2014 attendance for 22 of Major League Baseball’s 30 teams.

Giants hire Gabe Kapler as new manager

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The Giants announced on Tuesday the hiring of Gabe Kapler as manager. Kapler, filling the extremely large shoes of future Hall of Famer Bruce Bochy, inked a three-year deal, Alex Pavlovic of NBC Sports Bay Area reports. Kapler was one of three finalists for the job, beating out Astros bench coach Joe Espada and Rays bench coach Matt Quataro.

Following his 12-year playing career, Kapler was a coach for Israel’s team in the 2013 World Baseball Classic qualifier. He then became an analyst for FS1 before joining the Dodgers’ front office as the director of player development in November 2014. He was involved in three scandals there: one in which he tried to handle a sexual assault incident involving two Dodgers minor league players without telling police, one in which he allegedly discriminated against Nick Francona, a veteran and former baseball operations employee, and an incident that implicated most of the Dodgers’ front office concerning the recruiting of international free agents. The Dodgers reportedly kept a spreadsheet of employees and their level of criminality.

Despite Kapler’s background, the Phillies hired him as their manager ahead of the 2018 season. He would lead the Phillies to an 80-82 record that year and then helped them improve by one game in 2019, finishing at exactly .500 before being fired. Kapler’s tenure in Philly was tumultuous, often drawing ire from the local media and subsequently the fan base for not being tough enough on his players. The Phillies also reportedly had a clubhouse issue in 2018 in which players were playing video games in the clubhouse during games, prompting Carlos Santana to smash a TV with a bat.

Kapler has a history with Farhan Zaidi, the Giants’ president of baseball operations. They worked together in the Dodgers’ front office as Zaidi served as GM from November 2014-18.