Two weeks ago, the 2016 Major League Baseball season officially kicked off. The Kansas City Royals hosted the New York Mets, for a match up between the two teams that faced off for the 2015 World Series. The game not only marked the first Sunday night game of the year, but also marked the debut of the new “Sunday Night Baseball” team on ESPN. Dan Shulman, Aaron Boone, and Jessica Mendoza make up the new team of MLB game analysts. What makes the debut of this new team so special, is that Jessica Mendoza is now the first female to become a full time MLB game analyst on ESPN.
Jessica Mendoza is an outstanding athlete, as well as an exceptional broadcaster. She helped Team USA to a gold medal when she played on the national softball team, and her collegiate career proved that she is nothing more than an elite athlete. Her softball-playing prowess helped land her a job at ESPN covering college softball for the network. Eventually her phenomenal work covering softball landed her a job covering Major League Baseball.
There are many critics who think that Jessica should not be in the MLB broadcaster’s booth because she is a woman and has never played professional baseball before. In response, Jessica has been able to let those comments roll right off of her, as she is only concerned with receiving constructive criticism about her opinions related to the baseball field – not about the fact that she is a woman. Jessica is an inspiration to girls everywhere who dream of having sports broadcasting careers, or any career in sports for that matter. She is a great example of someone our PPI female (and male!) participants can look up to as PPI works to empower girls and young women, especially in our Middle East program, where 75% of the participants are girls!