Olivia Dunne’s First Presence Turns Into Disaster for MLB Boyfriend Paul Skenes

Published 08/29/2023, 2:41 PM EDT

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Months of whispers, speculation, and tantalizing hints finally gave way to the truth. Paul Skenes, the No. 1 pick in the 2023 MLB Draft, opened up about his relationship with Olivia Dunne. A story that had been the subject of rumors and curiosity found its moment of confirmation, shedding light on a connection brewing behind the scenes. Both Dunne and Skenes share a connection to the prestigious LSU. Livvy, a captivating gymnast, has become the highest-paid female collegiate athlete and a social media sensation.

On the other hand, with a record-breaking college season at LSU, Skenes achieved a 12-2 record, a 1.69 ERA, and a staggering 209 strikeouts in 102.2 innings. Skenes emerged as a force to be reckoned with. The anticipation was palpable as the moment arrived for Paul Skenes to make his Double-A debut. MLB fans, as well as his biggest cheerleader, Dunne, were looking forward to a memorable performance. Even with Dunne’s presence to support him, the debut did not unfold as planned.

Paul Skenes faces struggles at his debut


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According to MARCA, pitching for the Altoona Curve against the Akron Rubberducks, Skenes struggled to find his footing. His debut inning ended with him being charged with four runs after recording just two outs. The line: 2/3 IP, 3 H, 4 R, 4 ER, 2 BB, 2 K. In the aftermath of the challenging debut, Skenes’ response held a hint of resilience.

He shared with MiLB.com, “A bad outing is just a bad outing. It’s just baseball. Obviously, I want to go out there and win and pitch as best as I can every outing, and I’m going to do everything to prepare to do that for every outing. But it is baseball. The beautiful thing is it’s never as bad as it seems, and it’s never as good as it seems.” Amidst all of this Dunne’s support has been a recurring theme in Paul Skenes’ journey.

The hype that Skenes enjoys today is a royal kind. He has been considered the next one in line in pitching prospects since Stephen Strasburg’s Double-A debut in 2010. So much so that the Skenes’s debut arrival demanded a crowd that was the largest in the ballpark’s history—a colossal record of 10,164 viewers. Upon learning, Skenes gave a measured response.

I didn’t know that. That’s cool. Obviously, that’s not why I play the game. It’s not why any of us play the game; we play to win and compete. It is cool to have an audience, wherever it is. Playing at LSU and playing in the College World Series, you’re going to have that no matter what. That’s humbling for sure, and I’m glad we could give them a good game at the end of it.”

Once the duo had started dating, Skenes has been overflowing with excitement he shared that their ability to understand each other is what made them close. Previously, Skenes also had high praises for Dunne and wished she would watch a baseball game and enjoy it. He said, “I do wish she could come to a baseball game and just enjoy it. It does irk me. I don’t have any control over it. She really doesn’t either. I’m sure it’ll get better as I go up levels, but that’s something I want for her.” 

Watch this story: Struggling with Intense Training, Americas Crush Olivia Dunne Pays the Heavy Price

Even though the MLB player had a bad outing in his Double-A debut, Livvy once again became the center of focus and discussion in the public eye. However, among all this, Dunne continues to be a strong support to Skenes.

How Olivia Dunne was dragged into the mix


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Livvy, with a social media following exceeding 10 million, often finds herself in the constant glare of the public eye. Skenes, a pitching prospect brimming with potential, confirmed his relationship with Dunne, which has led to an unforeseen surge of public scrutiny. Her presence at several of his games showcases not only their relationship but also the unity of their paths.

However, his debut inning marked by struggles, enraged many fans who expressed their disappointment, dragging Olivia Dunne into the mix and even telling the couple to break up. Skenes, now entwined with Dunne’s public persona, encountered a level of scrutiny that went beyond the baseball diamond. As we reflect on the journey of Dunne and Paul Skenes, the question arises: Is it fair?


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Dunne, whose fame transcends gymnastics, becomes an unwitting partner in Skenes’ journey. While the world is quick to critique, it’s important to ponder whether Skenes deserves the intensity of scrutiny following a single debut, a mere glimpse into a promising career.

Unable to Attend Classes for Safety, Olivia Dunne Was Worse for Wear, Days After Returning to LSU


Written by:

Christaline Meyers


One take at a time

Christaline Meyers is a pro-writer for Essentially Sports. Having contributed to movies and web series, Christaline delved into sports journalism and like the puck on the ice, has been a force to be reckoned with in the US sports arena. Her experience in writing about the latest WSL event, the recent track and field record, and creative gymnastics routines, found her digging deeper into the minds of legends like Kelly Slater, Usain Bolt, and Simone Biles.
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Edited by:

Suman Varandani