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.
As we noted, Bryce Harper was ejected in the Phillies-Mets game for arguing balls and strikes, punctuating the ejection with a fairly aggressive argument in which he sorta shoved his manager into the ump, had to be held back by teammates and may very well have earned himself a suspension.
We’ll see about the suspension part, but even if he didn’t anger Rob Manfred over all of that, he did annoy his teammate, Jake Arrieta, who was on the mound last night. Here were Arrieta’s comments after the game:
“Look, I mean, [Harper’s] got to understand we need him in right field,” Arrieta said. “I don’t care how bad the umpire is. He wasn’t great for either side. I’m out there trying to make pitches, and he misses some calls. So what? We need him out there. I need him in right field, I need him at the plate, and he wasn’t there. So that hurts.
“We were flat from start to finish. Two-hour delay, it doesn’t matter. We have to be ready to play. We weren’t, and it showed. The dugout was flat. The defense wasn’t good. Didn’t throw the ball well as a staff overall. We got beat. We started at 8:45. I don’t think our guys were ready to play. We’ve got to come out tomorrow ready to play.”
For Harper’s part he was contrite after the game, echoing Arrieta’s words about needing to keep a level head and about him being more useful in the game than in the clubhouse. Still, he got told by his teammate. And seems to know he got told.