Over the past few years, there has been a change in sports where women are making more of an impact. For example, who have female assistant coaches NBA and NFL, women getting jobs as scouts, officials, agents, etc. Even though there are still some challenges for women in the sports industry, they are making way more of an impact that before.
The Fox TV drama series, Pitch (which premiered on Sept 22, 2016) is groundbreaking series because it is the first show that shows a female in a male dominance sport. The show starts Kylie Bunbury (The Sitter, Twisted, Prom) as pitcher Ginny Baker, who becomes the first female athlete to play for a MLB team. Barker begins her career as a minor leaguer for the San Diego Padres and where she deals with being the first female player in a male sport. The series also stars Mark Consuelos (American Horror Story, All My Children, A Walk Among the Tombstones, husband of Kelly Ripa), Ali Larter (Heroes, Chicago Sons, Varsity, Final Destination 2, Legally Blonde, Obsessed), Dan Lauria (The Wonder Years, Independence Day, The Spirit), Mo McRae (The Butler, November Rule, Gridiron Gang), Tim Jo (High School Rock, The Neighbors, Glory Daze), Michael Beach (Third Watch, ER, Waiting to Exhale, Soul Food, Lean on Me, Spawn 3), and Mark-Paul Gosselaar (Saved by the Bell, Precious Cargo, NYPD Blue, Heist)
Why Pitch is important? The one number reason is that it gives females the belief that they can do anything and it gives young black females the idea that they can be successful (Bunbury is a black actress). Baker is strong, determine, focus and fearless female character who is motivated by not only being the best female athlete but the best baseball player in general. There are times during the series that Baker shows her vulnerability and softer side. This gives the character a great balanced because she doesn’t make her seems like a robot, she is a baseball player and human being too. Which makes very relatable to the female audience. Pitch has the potential to be one of the best and important shows on TV. Megan Vick of tvguide.com talks about Pitch role in society today http://www.tvguide.com/news/pitch-season-preview-feminism-racism-sports-drama/
Side Note: Pitch premiered on Fox on Thursday, Sept 22, 2016, and the season finale was December 8, 2016. There is no word on if the show is returning for a second season. Overall rating for the show was an average of 3.0 million viewers.
Becky Hammon, Nancy Lieberman, Jen Welter, Kathryn Smith, Sarah Thomas, Amanda Hopkins, Jessica Mendoza, Serena Williams, Mo’ne Davis, Ronda Rousey are women who raising the bar in sports. They are breaking barriers and breaking records.
The former WNBA star became the first female coach in NBA history. She was named the assistant coach of the San Antonio Spurs in August 2014. Hammon played sixteen seasons as a point guard in the WNBA for the New York Liberty (1999-2006) and San Antonio Stars (2007-2014).
Hammon is the only one making history in the NBA, Nancy Lieberman was the second female ever to be hired by an NBA team. Hall-of-Famer and former Olympian was hired by the Sacramento Kings as an assistant coach on July 2015.
In November 2009, Lieberman was the first woman in history to coach men’s team. She was the coach of NBA Development team, the Texas Legends (the D-League team of the Dallas Mavericks).
Lieberman impacted on sports is undeniable, she has been an NBA coach, WNBA player and coach, general manager, and was a broadcaster for ABC, NBC, ESPN, FOX Sports Southwest. Lieberman is also an author and motivational speaker, two-time Olympic medalist, three-time All-American, was named National Player of the Year twice and won two NCAA championships at Old Dominion University.
Women are not only making history in the NBA but MLB too. Jessica Mendoza, the former All-American (four-time) in college softball and a member of the U.S women’s national softball team, was named the first female to be part of the ESPN Sunday Night Baseball broadcasting team in October 2016.
Mendoza won the silver medal at 2008 Olympics in Beijing. She has worked as a color analyst for ESPN and a reporter for ESPNU.
Serena Williams arguably the best female tennis player and athlete in sports. Her dominance speaks for itself and yet some people don’t want to give her credit because she is a woman but she keeps on winning and being a positive role model for young girls.
While Becky Hammon, Nancy Lieberman, Jen Welter, Kathryn Smith, Sarah Thomas, Amanda Hopkins, Jessica Mendoza, Serena Williams, Mo’ne Davis, Ronda Rousey are paving the way for women in the sports industry and giving young females inspiration