“You play ball like a girl!” is about to become words of praise, not an insult.
Heck, Mo’ne Davis struck out damn near every boy she faced in the Little League World Series. This chick reserved a spot on the bench for both Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig after she sat them down in succession.
It’s 2021, and girls are proving every single day they can play America’s Pastime at a high level, even into the high school and college baseball ranks.
Olivia Pichardo most certainly fits that description because she’s turning heads as a female high school pitcher. She even earned recognition by Major League Baseball after going viral for throwing “100 MPH” at a stadium.
Olivia Pichardo’s Viral ‘100 MPH’ Throw
Olivia was just 15 when she went viral for hitting triple digits on a stadium radar gun at the Chicago White Sox’s Guaranteed Rate Field in 2019.
Her first throw read 97 and her second climbed to 100. She clearly has a great arm and a great throwing motion, but there’s no way this teenage girl just hit a cardboard catcher with the same speed Nolan Ryan or Aroldis Chapman fire, right?
Maybe it was a glitch. Maybe the gun, which typically measures the speed of the ball out of the hand (which doesn’t factor in distance), was showing her throws in kilometers per hour. That seems more likely. It would place her in the 62 MPH range.
But the thought of a 15-year-old girl firing a Chapman-like heater? That evokes big “Rookie of the Year” memories.
Olivia Pichardo’s Baseball Career
Olivia Pichardo hasn’t stopped lighting up radar guns.
Playing for the Greater New York Athletic Alliance baseball club and her high school ball at the Garden School in Queens, New York, she’s learned how to carve up her male competitors at the plate.
Pichardo’s fastball isn’t quite topping out at 100 just yet but is reportedly up to 82 MPH. In four innings at Perfect Game tournaments, she didn’t allow a run and struck out four batters.
Maybe it’s because of her fastball. Maybe her un-hittable curveball had a role in that:
She has also has a dynamite swing:
Olivia began playing the sport when she was 5. She’s been firing strikes ever since and the Class of 2022 player hopes to take the mound for a college team.
“Unlike most baseball playing kids my age, however, I’m a female baseball player. I have the same drive and ambitions as any one of my peers. I want to continue to play the game at the highest level I can because I want to know what my potential is,” she wrote on her SportsRecruits.com profile.
“There are a lot of misunderstandings about how far or where a female can play baseball. I am looking for an opportunity to display my skills and earn my spot on a team through hard work. My ideal school is one that has a very high academic standard and a very competitive baseball team.”
Boom! Let’s hope Olivia Pichardo keeps at it and shatters every barrier along the way. Hearing a MLB announcer say “now making her major league debut: Olivia Pichardo” would be an all-time moment in baseball.