ESPN Tweeted Then Quickly Deleted a Tribute to Danny Almonte

Ryan Phillips
Danny Almonte Little League Controversy
Danny Almonte Little League Controversy / Mario Tama/Getty Images
facebooktwitter

It's been 19 years since Danny Almonte threw a perfect game at the Little League World Series. ESPN's social media managers thought it would be a great idea to honor that achievement on Wednesday. Then they didn't.

For those who don't remember, Almonte was a member of Rolando Paulino Little League out of the Bronx, and he was a phenom on the mound. The left-handed strikeout machine dominated the Little League circuit in the summer of 2001. That culminated in a game against Apopka (Florida) National Little League's team, when he threw the first perfect game at the LLWS since 1979. Almonte was even dubbed "Little Unit" in an homage to Randy Johnson. There was just one problem: Almonte was 14, over the age limit for Little League.

ESPN's tweet was a video of highlights from the perfect game, with Almonte discussing it as the audio track. Here's a screenshot of the tweet:

So what, exactly, made anyone think this was a good idea? Danny Almonte cheated his way to a brief moment of fame. Was it the kid's fault? Maybe not, but this isn't exactly the kind of thing anyone should be honoring. The teams he beat during that Little League World Series were never given a fair chance to compete because they faced an older player. They are the ones who deserve to be remembered.

This is so ridiculous, it would be like if ESPN did a documentary fondly remembering the year Mark McGwire and Sammy Sosa shattered Roger Maris' home run record solely because they were both juiced to the gills. Oh, right.

facebooktwitter