Welcome to our recap of the sixth episode of Pitch, entitled “Wear It”. As always, there are spoilers, so read at your own risk.
Ginny Baker (Kylie Bunbury) has apparently had an eventful couple of days. The episode opens with her meeting with a psychiatrist, Dr. Andrea Barton (Rita Wilson), who asks Ginny to recount what she’s been through. While this week’s episode still has the present/flashback format, these flashbacks take place relatively recently, all within the past 48 hours.
Ginny’s troubles seem to begin with her signing an endorsement deal with Nike. Nike has designed a campaign which, naturally, focuses on the historic nature of Ginny’s situation, comparing her to other famous “firsts” like Jackie Robinson, Sally Ride and Barack Obama. It’s dramatic, and it’s a lot of weight to place on Ginny’s shoulders, but she and her agent Amelia (Ali Larter) both say they love it. Nike presents Ginny with new cleats and a new glove, and they will celebrate the agreement with a party the following night in Los Angeles.
It doesn’t take long for Ginny to start feeling the pressure of her endorsement deal. At 3:30 a.m. (on a day she’s slated to pitch, no less), Ginny has a panic attack while looking at the mockups of the ad campaign. She calls Amelia, who is with Mike (Mark-Paul Gosselaar), and asks her to come over. Ginny asks Amelia if it’s too late to back out of the deal, and it is. But Amelia reminds her how great the campaign is. It takes her seriously as an athlete, and doesn’t hypersexualize her. This is, of course, something that has long been a concern for female athletes.
Back in the present, the session with Dr. Barton continues as Ginny takes hacks in the batting cage. Here, Ginny reveals that she feels she doesn’t deserve to be mentioned among the likes of the other “firsts” from the ad. They’re “real heroes,” and she’s “a number-five starter.” We then flash back to her start from the previous day.
In the episode’s only actual baseball scene, Ginny is on the mound with one out in the top of the second, down 6-0 to the Phillies. When Mike goes out to talk to Ginny, she’s breathing heavily, and he asks if she’s having a panic attack. Ginny suspects Amelia said something to him. Manager Al (Dan Lauria) heads to the mound to see if she’s alright, and reminds her that the bullpen is taxed, so she has to “eat some innings.” “We’re playing for tomorrow, kid. You gotta wear it today.” (Hey, “Wear It” — that’s the name of this episode!)
Al, GM Oscar (Mark Consuelos) and new president of baseball operations Charlie (Kevin Connolly) are concerned about Ginny — not just her struggles that day, but also her out-of-line plea to Oscar about not trading Blip (Mo McRae). Oscar suggests that maybe she shouldn’t go to the Nike party. Ever the numbers geek, Charlie, reminds them that it’s a “limited data set” of two bad days, and that they probably shouldn’t worry just yet. (Also, Charlie, “limited data set” is not the preferred nomenclature. “Small sample size,” please.)
Amelia brings Ginny a $10,000 dress to wear to her party, but Ginny is more concerned with Mike knowing about her panic attack. Amelia insists she didn’t tell him anything, but Ginny comments that she may not call Amelia in such situations going forward.
The gang heads to L.A., and Ginny makes her red-carpet appearance at the Nike party. Her image is everywhere, and all eyes are on her. She’s approached by a waitress, and Ginny assumes it’s because she wants a picture. No, she just wants Ginny’s drink order. Fame has gone to Ginny’s head so much that she’s forgotten how waitresses work.
Amelia finds Mike, and they discuss what happened during the game. They decide to call things off, with Amelia declaring that Mike’s “head wasn’t really in” their relationship.
Ginny, quickly weary of the party and the attention, goes to the kitchen for a reprieve. The waitress from earlier, Cara (Lyndsy Fonseca), finds her with her drink. Cara suggests that she and Ginny go elsewhere. Ginny accompanies her new friend to a house party.
Ginny’s social-media manager, Eliot (Tim Jo), tries to flirt with one of Nike’s PR people, Tina (Gabrielle Bourne). He seems to be making progress when Amelia starts panicking over the fact that she can’t locate their client. Better luck next time, Eliot.
Ginny is really letting loose at the other party. There’s Mario Kart! Dancing! Beer pong! And… dunking a basketball into a hoop over a swimming pool? Ginny decides that she can do this in the $10,000 dress, but not without sneakers, so she borrows a pair of — gasp — New Balance shoes. Many party guests film this, and waste no time uploading footage. Nike’s going to be none too pleased.
Amelia and Eliot use the video to track down the house where the party was, but Ginny is gone by that point, leaving behind only the chlorine-soaked $10,000 dress. Eliot laments that Amelia doesn’t appreciate him enough, and somehow gets her to give him a raise, even though this seems like a rather inopportune moment to air personal grievances.
Al, Charlie and Oscar have reconvened to discuss the new developments in the Ginny situation. Oscar brings up the idea of demoting Ginny to Triple-A to “get her head straight,” which Al opposes. Charlie has something else in mind.
A drunk Ginny and her new friends have gone to get fast food. They agree that going to the beach would be a great idea. Ginny’s never been there, despite living 10 minutes away.
Mike, who ditched the Nike party to crash his ex-wife’s dinner party, stays to help clean up after everyone else has left. He confesses to Rachel (JoAnna Garcia Swisher) that he’s still in love with her. Rachel reminds Mike that he only wants what he can’t have and needs to figure out on his own what it is he really wants from life, preferably without dragging anyone else down with him.
Ginny awakes the next morning, but she’s not at the beach — she’s in Cara’s car outside of Petco Park. Cara knew it was important that Ginny get there. Pretty considerate of her to take Ginny’s drunk ass all the way from L.A. to San Diego just to make sure this relative stranger got to work on time.
Ginny reports to Charlie, Oscar, and Al and apologizes for her behavior. Their main concern isn’t about the partying, but another video. Cara recorded Ginny breaking down in tears, saying she doesn’t want to go back to her job. Cara didn’t release the video, though — she handed it over to Amelia out of concern for Ginny’s wellbeing. (Seriously, what a good friend. Maybe hold on to this one, Ginny.)
Everyone has collectively decided that Ginny needs to talk to a psychiatrist who specializes in high-pressure situations. Ginny resists only briefly, ultimately admitting she’s not fine and could use the help.
Ginny finally has a breakthrough with Dr. Barton when she says out loud (and sober) that she’s not sure she wants to play baseball. She has to reckon with the fact that she appears larger than life to a great number of people, even though that’s not who she really is. Dr. Barton praises Ginny for asking herself these difficult questions. Now the work of trying to answer them begins.
For the first time in a while, Ginny’s in a good place mentally, but that’s short lived. That night, Amelia informs Ginny that the explicit selfies she took with her former beau have resurfaced, and will soon be all over the internet. Guess we know what Ginny will be dealing with next week.
This is the least baseball-focused episode of Pitch thus far, so there’s not a ton to explore there. However, it’s a necessary look into Ginny’s psychological wellbeing, as in depth as the show has gone thus far. We’ve been getting glimpses of elements of Ginny’s struggle: newfound fame, family issues, romance gone awry, loneliness. This is the first time since the pilot that we’ve seen the collective toll all of these things have been taking on Ginny, and perhaps the best acting we’ve seen from Bunbury.
Readers, I’m curious as to how much you enjoyed “Wear It” relative to the previous five episodes. Does the show still hold your interest when it’s not as heavy on the baseball? Do you find these characters compelling enough on their own? Weigh in below on that or anything else you noticed in this week’s episode.
- The batting-cage scene is the first time we’ve seen Ginny swing a bat (she stood in the box in “Beanball” but never got to swing at anything). Bunbury’s swing isn’t especially convincing — but then, plenty of actual major-league pitchers look rather helpless with the bat.
- During that scene, Ginny mentions that she’s not the “first woman… not even the first black woman to pitch professionally. But no one remembers Peanut Johnson.” This seems like a good opportunity to remember Mamie “Peanut” Johnson, one of three women to play Negro league baseball.
- Most of the games played at Petco on Pitch have been day games (by my count, all but one). This seems odd, since in reality, the majority of games there are night games. Perhaps it’s more difficult to film at night.