Fans of the Little League World Series will see aluminum-bat home runs, kids cheering after wins and some shedding tears after losses. You will also see one very unfortunate graphic hitting ESPN's chyron.
Parting with the usual questions given to these kids such as favorite food (pizza) or favorite player (Derek Jeter), producers asked Nagiru Hiramatsu his favorite singer.
Somehow, someway, "Wandai Wrection" made its way to the lower third on this particular day.
As Kaduk assumes, the child was trying to relay that he is a fan of the popular group One Direction, a collection of young men who enjoy crooning along the beach.
Sure, there is no accounting for taste, but you might think ESPN would be able to skirt disaster, especially knowing its track record for such deplorable ends.
You would also think a major network would be extra careful when the KTVU debacle remains fresh in people's minds.
The working theory, according to Kaduk, is a producer was tasked with finding out the usual particulars fans sitting from home get to find out about these kids: favorite team, sports, food, TV show and, of course, singer.
From there, a befuddled producer just tried to phonetically spell out the first thing he or she heard.
That seems like a nice theory, but it means someone just typed in what they thought they heard and called it a day. I am all for apathy as a plausible scenario, but something doesn't sound right.
Fortunately, someone wrote in to Big League Stew, and the report has been updated with a bit more information, causing just a tad bit more confusion:
I read your article on the ESPN Little League gaffe and thought I'd offer a little insight. Last year my son played on the Orange Little League team that won the Southern California State Championship and advanced to the Western Regionals in San Bernardino. Unlike this year, unfortunately only the semi-finals and finals were on ESPN (this year all of the games are). Anyway, the boys all had to fill out an ESPN questionnaire before they even arrived in San Bernardino as part of the packet of forms. So it is quite possible that the boy wrote out the name of the band that way.
What we have here is another explanation that makes even less sense. It would mean that the boy has no idea how to spell his favorite band's name.
I guess we could have a very cunning and equally hilarious young boy who just wanted to troll the world and get ESPN in trouble.
I have difficulty buying that, too.
All we know is that this is a horrible graphic that is clearly wrong, and we have absolutely no closure on why or how it all happened.
If any of you fine people have any clue what went down, by all means help my head from spinning clear off my neck.
Otherwise, enjoy a bunch of kids playing a simple game while the weight of the world rests on their still-maturing shoulders.
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