Baseball. The boys of summer. Pennant races. Stolen bases.
Maybe it’s just me, but opening day has always been a symbol of the end of winter; the promise that hot summer nights are just around the corner… and that the pennant is within reach!
But, I live in Pittsburgh. And, cheer for the Pittsburgh Pirates. Where the last two decades have been filled with baseball heartache. Aside from a few brief, shining moments (ie, Freddie Sanchez winning a batting title), baseball has been a little painful.
While I’ll spare you the politics of Pittsburgh Pirates baseball, I will say that the bulk of my good baseball memories over the last two decades have come at the little league park or from the Motion Picture Association of America.
And for that, I say: Hooray for Hollywood!
There have been some real winners, one of which has always reminded me that: “There’s no crying in baseball!” (“A League of Their Own” … Anyone?)
Now, in movies about baseball—Tons of crying. Face it, if you were able to sit through “Field of Dreams,” “The Rookie” or “The Natural” without crying, you are probably ice cold inside. Just kidding, sports fans!
Of course, there are funny ones, too. The thing is, there are a great big bunch of movies about baseball. I looked it up on the Internet and found a list that compiled 61 of them (see link below). While I have seen but a fraction of them, I do have some favorites.
“Major League,” “The Bad News Bears (original with Walter Matthau and the newer incarnation with Billy Bob Thornton),” “Bull Durham,” “The Fan” and, of course, the ones I already mentioned, are winners in my book. I also have yet to see “Moneyball,” which stars Brad Pitt & Jonah Hill, making it an almost certain winner for me.
Another great thing about baseball movies: Many of them can be a family affair, are perfect for a date night, are great for a guys’ night out and even can appeal to just the girls. We feel the crack of the bat from Robert Redford in “The Natural,” laugh as Tom Hanks struggles as a manager in “A League of Their Own” and enjoy every Kevin Costner memorable quote in “Bull Durham.”
In the end, movies about baseball are a great American pastime. Play ball.
Until Next Time…