Believe it or not, women have a long history of playing baseball, the favorite sport among men who think football is “kinda gay, you know?” Women formed college teams in the mid-19th century, played alongside men in exhibition games, and A League of Their Own obviously taught us all that women stepped in to fill the void left when the men went off to fight the nazis in WWII (and that Rosie O'Donnell wasn’t always, like, THAT fat).
Since then, though, girls have been mostly relegated to softball, because apparently the powers that be decided your delicate feminine sensibilities are just too fragile to handle something as inherently masculine as throwing a ball overhand. Instead, softball is a lot like baseball except not as good because the fields are smaller and the big stupid balls go fucking nowhere, especially when your stupid beer league insists upon using wooden bats. Technically, there’s no rule preventing women from playing professional baseball, but the last woman signed by a team was Carey Schueler in 1993, and the last woman to play was Lizzie Murphy in 1922.
That could all theoretically change in the future, though, as a 16 year old French girl named Melissa Mayeux just became the first woman added to MLB’s international registration list.
She won’t be spitting tobacco juice or calling timeout to gratuitously grab her crotch in the batter’s box on TV any time soon, however. Getting added to the international registration list just means she’s eligible to be signed by a MLB club – there are no guarantees. But it’s still a big deal – while technically anyone can be added to the list, they typically only bother with people who demonstrate the potential to be signed.
I’m no baseball scout, but judging by the clips I’ve seen on YouTube, she can handle the bat and is pretty quick with the glove. Of the major sports, baseball is definitely the one where women could most easily cross over to the men’s side. It requires neither the size of football nor the height or physicality of basketball, and there are plenty of guys playing in the big leagues right now who don’t hit with much power and instead earn their living with their speed and defense.
Even if she were to get signed, it would likely take a couple of years – European prospects typically sign closer to 18, and I would imagine clubs would want to see her play against some decent pitching. Still, the idea of hearing a bunch of fucking redneck baseball fans everywhere say “Yew wanna sign up a gurl to play basebaw, and from fuckin’ FRANCE!?!?” makes even the slimmest possibility worth hoping for.