This week’s show is all about the the 1989 sports comedy classic, Major League. I start off by talking about my time as a not so great third baseman in little league baseball, then I move onto the move itself. I discuss the plot of the film, the cast, the alternate ending, the music and much more.
As a young man, my father played baseball and my mother’s family were big fans, often gathering around to listen to it on the radio together. So as I approached little league age, I had this idea that I might try to play baseball.
Oddly enough, no one in my family had any opinion about this. They weren’t pro, they weren’t against. So as a young person, I was driving this entire decision, which also meant I was a little in the dark about equipment. What I did know is that in the basement was a baseball glove, the one that had belonged to my father. And I took it with me to the tryouts.
This glove would be with me for probably the first month and a half of playing. And I remember this well because the various coaches thought it was the funniest thing in the world and would reference baseball players from the past who I had never heard of in relation to to my ancient glove.
So I would make a play and I would hear way to go, Snuffy Stirnweiss! I didn’t understand the reference, but they seem to get a kick out of it. And of course this meant everyone on the team started to get a kick out of my old glove.
Of course you could only be called Hank Majeski so many times before you finally say, “who the heck is Hank Majeski?” So I would go over to the library and try to find these people. Unfortunately we didn’t have a big baseball reference section at our library.
So the easier solution was for me to get a new glove and after playing for about six to eight weeks, which is way into the season at this point, my family got me a new glove and as soon as they did I had to relearn how to do everything because the old glove didn’t have as much give and I had to do certain actions to hold onto the ball.
This new glove was much higher tech and it worked a lot better. So in the long run it was a better deal for me. Although I could see that the coaches were a little depressed, not seeing the kid with the antique glove running around.
I had a great time in little league. It taught me the basics of baseball and it’s a sport I’ve enjoyed watching ever since. I also happened to enjoy baseball movies and on today’s show I’d like to talk to you about one of them, “Major League.”
Major League is one of just a few great baseball movies and it is filled with great actors. So if you like baseball or not, I think you will enjoy it.
Now I know someone is going to ask me what I think the best baseball movies are, so here is my list. Not exactly in order…
- The Bad News Bears (1976)
- The Sandlot (1993)
- Field of Dreams (1989)
- Major League (1989)
- Bull Durham (1988)
- The Natural (1984)
- Moneyball (2011)
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Listen and download the Retroist Major League Podcast
This was only my second time recording this podcast. The first time was a few years ago and it was considerably longer. I had just read this amazing article that someone had written speculating on team stats and I got into that during the recording. I didn’t even touch that this time around.
I cut a bit where I discuss my favorite Bob Uecker moments from the film. For the life of me, I could not remember the name of the guy who works the booth with him, who gives a great performance.
I cut a bunch of stuff where I was a little harsh about the romantic comedy aspect of the film. I just don’t think that stuff works well in this film. It works even worse in this podcast.
I cut a lot of the cast. This movie has a huge cast. I tried to focus on a handful that I think are worth mentioning.
I cut some stuff about the box office the week this was released and talking about how two great movies came out in 1989.
I cut some stuff from my story about the team and my playing. For those interested, I mostly played 3rd base in little league. I never played baseball beyond little league. No team I was ever on was a “winning” team, but we did win games and get free pizza.
I cut out a section where I talked about being an umpire briefly. I will probably hold onto that story for a Bad News Bears podcast.
Audio includes the Major League Amex and Mattel Electronic Baseball commercial. Removed a Big League Chew commercial since I had already used that in a past episode. Although I do love Big League Chew.
Music under my story is “Sad Toys.” Music that closes the show is “Power Closing.” Both are by Peachy
Thanks for listening to the show and I hope you have a great week.