by: Diana Davis Updated:
ATLANTA - A 12-year-old girl is getting national attention for dominating a highly competitive boys’ baseball league.
Katie Goldberg’s skills have landed her an appearance on The Katie Show, which airs on Channel 2 on Monday at 3 p.m. She spoke to Channel 2’s Diana Davis on Friday.
She started as a T-ball toddler, at age 2 or 3, following the lead of her 5-year-old brother.
“I just wanted to go out there and hit and throw and do exactly what he wanted to do,” Goldberg said. “My dad would go out there and put the ball up here, and I would just swing away.”
She’s always played on boys’ teams. She said initially, some of her teammates were skeptical.
“They're just like, ‘It’s a girl up there. She's not supposed to be there.' I mean, I just have got to show what I can do, and I’m a regular baseball player,” Goldberg said.
She’s so good that she's her team's cleanup hitter and has filled in for older boys.
“It's impressive she can hit the ball, and she's good at baseball,” teammate Harris Beckely, 12, told Davis.
He even admitted she’s better than him and said he’s not embarrassed to be outplayed by a girl.
Goldberg’s mom, Gail, told Davis she thought she’d be getting a little girl dressed up in ribbons and lace. From the start she said, that just wasn’t her daughter.
“She wanted a ball for everything, balls in the grocery store, baseballs, tennis balls -- anything to do with a ball, she wanted. So I knew right away, that's it,” she said.
Randy Rhino, her coach this summer, has watched Goldberg play since she was 8 or 9 years old.
“The thing that amazed me about her is how strong her arm is. She’s got a cannon ball for an arm, boy or girl. It’s a cannon and it’s nice to have something like that over there on third base.”
Just a couple of weeks ago, she hit back-to-back home runs, including a grand slam in the boys’ tournament. She has hit 11 home runs in six all-boys tournaments.
“I’ve been playing since I was a really little kid, and they're just like brothers to me, basically,” Goldberg said.
A rising seventh-grader, Goldberg starts at the Marist School this fall. She said she hopes to try out for the boys’ baseball team in the spring.