The Team that Knocked Taney Out of the LLWS Has Been Stripped of Title

Pictured: Mo'ne Davis and the players of Jackie Robinson West, hailing from the greater Chicago area, lower Wisconsin, southwestern Michigan and  western Indiana, Photo credit: Ed Szczepanski-USA TODAY Sports
Pictured: Mo’ne Davis and the players of Jackie Robinson West, hailing from the greater Chicago area, Hoffman Estates, lower Wisconsin, southwestern Michigan and most of the rest of the Great Lakes region and the Midwest, Photo credit: Ed Szczepanski-USA TODAY Sports

Just yesterday we found out that the Jackie Robinson West team that knocked the Taney Dragons out of the Little League World Series and went on to win the U.S. Championship was being looked at for rules violations. Stuff like this happens all the time, I figured, so we’ll hear about an investigation and they’ll make a little show of it and nothing will happen. Wrong. Jackie Robinson West has been stripped of its title, its coach has been suspended, and its 2014 LLWS wins have been vacated. As a result, the United States LLWS Championship has been awarded to the college-aged men of Mountain Ridge Little League from Las Vegas.

So what did Jackie Robinson West do wrong? ESPN says they were found to have used a “falsified boundary map,” and that “team officials met with neighboring Little League districts in Illinois to claim players and build what amounts to a superteam.”

Little League International CEO Stephen D. Keener said in a statement:

This is a heartbreaking decision. What these players accomplished on the field and the memories and lessons they have learned during the Little League World Series tournament is something the kids can be proud of, but it is unfortunate that the actions of adults have led to this outcome.

As our Little League operations staff learned of the many issues and actions that occurred over the course of 2014 and prior, as painful as this is, we feel it a necessary decision to maintain the integrity of the Little League program. No team can be allowed to attempt to strengthen its team by putting players on their roster that live outside their boundaries …

Little League takes these matters very seriously and has spent countless hours gathering information about the many issues facing Jackie Robinson West Little League and Illinois District 4,” Keener said. “During our review, it became clear that both Jackie Robinson West officials and District Administrator, Mike Kelly signed documents to make players eligible who should not have been.

Where does that leave Taney? Nowhere. The team obviously got the most publicity out of the tourney and Mo’ne Davis is playing in the NBA All-Star Celebrity game (really), but that fame will fade. The rest of the kids on that team will be (and have already been) forgotten. They were robbed. And it’s not even surprising.

So if anyone ever asks you what it’s like to be a Philly sports fan, just remind them that in addition to all the painful, legitimate losses in recent years, the city’s Little League team’s quest for a title came to a halt at the hands of a bunch of cheaters, the pro baseball team lost the 2009 World Series thanks in large part to two clutch hits from perhaps the most prolific and notorious PED user in sports history, Villanova lost to National Champion North Carolina in the 2005 Sweet 16 thanks to a bogus traveling call, and the Eagles lost the Super Bowl to a team that was likely filming their practices and perhaps using a ball that had the structural integrity of a shuttlecock. Maybe it’s time our teams start skirting the rules. Wait… what’s that? The 1993 Phillies were loaded up with more steroids than Victor Conte’s storage unit, the Flyers fought and intimidated their way to two Stanley Cups, and the defending National League champs Phils’ feared lineup started regressing in 2010 once they stopped stealing signs? Oh, well, carry on. Nothing to see here.


20 Responses

  1. How could you feel bad for the Taney kids? They still got beat up by the team from Nevada don’t forget, who is now the US champs. They got a Broad Street parade that many felt wasn’t deserved, and they pushed the rules to the limits as well, didn’t they have a kid or two from Jersey and they drew from much of the city of Philly? Not saying they broke any rules but look at the population base they drew from versus say your local little league…

    Move on, nothing to see here.

  2. So……..if the Chicago team didn’t cheat, the Las Vegas team that caved in Taney’s skulls would’ve beaten them again basically.

    Quit your whining.

    Its sick that this much emphasis and media attention/hype is given to 11 year olds anyway. Its no different then child beauty pageant contests.

    Isn’t what Chicago is accused of doing basically what Taney did anyway?

  3. The old redneck NASCAR saying is that “if you ain’t cheating, you ain’t trying”. Also, I’m sorry, but if the most acclaimed player on the team (in that age group) is a female – your guys aren’t very good.

  4. Wait, fights and intimidation are cheating?!? Here I thought it was just an unused tactic at that point in time. Thanks, Jim!

    1. Yes, Jim is fucking brutal. Tries to force a larger point by word-vomiting shit that makes no sense. Jim if you’re saying the Flyers cheated, which by mentioning them in this post you clearly are, then sac up and come out and say it. Then we can all beat you to a bloody pulp for slandering one of the few champions the city has ever had. Fucking coward.

  5. wasn’t there similar complaints about our beloved Taney Dragons?
    Believe I remember hearing that they formed a “new” district and other teams they played felt they had cheated by creating a super team?

  6. What chew mean dees boys and day coaches cheated? That’s racist and insensitive. On behaff of all de broders and sistas, I aks you, where is de justice?

  7. Good.. Good.. Good!!

    The media portrayed them winning as a ‘feel good’ story because a bunch of black kids representing the district of a mulatto President represented the US..

    In 2015.. That’s how they were portrayed! Pathetic..

    Same w Mo’ne Davis.. change her name to ‘Molly’ and make her white, and few to no one cares about her pitching success.. Certainly no SI covers or trips to NBA all star game..

    Everything in this world has to be twisted, tainted and tarnished by race now and the white-guilt media must do everything possible to paint black-success as ‘feel good’ or heart warming whereas just being successful regardless of skin color isn’t good enough

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