'Pitch' Explores The Glory & The Pressure Of Being The First Woman To Pitch In The Major League

Pitch opened with the biggest day of Ginny Baker's life: her first day in the Major League. After spending years training with her father, and then a few more years in the minor league, Ginny is finally called up to pitch in the MLB for the San Diego Padres, making her the first woman to play in the Majors. But Pitch isn't just about the glory of being the first woman to pitch in the major league, it's also about the crushing pressure being the first woman anything brings.

First things first: how did Ginny become the first woman in the MLB? It's established early on that Ginny doesn't have superhuman strength or any other secret that makes her able to compete on the same level as the men pitching-wise. What she does have is a screwball pitch the likes of witch the Padres have never seen. It's what has made her an international hero, what has earned her her very own agent (Ali Larter) and landed her on the cover of magazines. But Ginny's MLB debut isn't all triumph or celebration. In fact, she chokes during her first game in part because of the pressure she feels being the one to break that glass ceiling.

Before her first game, Ginny meets a group of young fans in the stands, mostly girls who look at her as if she's the answer to their prayers. Little girls in the crowd wave signs that read "Ginnsanity," and a few tell her that they want to play in the Major League too. While all the love and support is well-intentioned, it also emphasizes the fact that Ginny has the hopes of an entire generation of girls resting on her shoulders. Ginny is acutely aware of the fact that if she fails, she'll be the only woman to play in the MLB for a long time. The pressure almost gets to her. In fact, it does, causing her to walk out of her first game without having thrown a single strike. But, the next time she's up at the mound, Ginny realizes that she can succeed, but only if she does it for herself.

It'll be interesting to see how Pitch balances Ginny's career in the MLB with the outside pressure of being, essentially, a female hero. The importance of Ginny's groundbreaking start with the Padres isn't going to fade away anytime soon, and that pressure is only going to build from here. Whatever happens, I do know that it will be a lot of fun to watch.

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