Baseball – It’s Better than Hollywood

So let’s write a script for a movie about baseball. Remember, it’s Hollywood, so it can be over the top and unbelievable.

Let’s start with a trade. One team has World Series dreams but is in desperate need of relief pitching. The other team just needs a few good players to pull them up a notch in their division. So they actually work a trade while they are playing each other. One team sends its ace relief pitcher to the other for a 24 year-old second baseman just a year out rookie status. They trade uniforms, clubhouses, lockers and move across the field for the next game in their series. It never happens, but remember. It’s Hollywood.

The reliever is crushed. He was doing so much for his team with one scoreless save after another. You can even write in a scene where he sits in his new team’s dugout crying. The fans of his old team are outraged. The GM gets hate mail. But the deal is done. The pitcher stands before the cameras and makes brave statements about the nature of the game, the business and how great the fans are in both cities.

The kid second baseman seethes in silence. He had played well but his team saw him as expendable. You will see from the look in his eyes that he hopes some day to use his bat to get even.

A few weeks later in the season, the teams square off again. And since it’s Hollywood, you have the new young infielder come to bat in the eighth inning of a scoreless game. The bases are loaded, of course. And on the mound is the reliever who cried in the dugout after the trade. Of course. It’s Hollywood.

So you write him in for a grand slam. Why not? Since it’s Hollywood. But this is where I would expect the production company suits to step in and say it’s just too much. Even for Hollywood.

With only one out, let’s make that a sacrifice fly. Put it way back on the warning track. Create suspense as the ball goes toward the fence. But not out of the park.

Make it a great catch, a brilliant throw and a close play at the plate. Score the run, but a grand slam? Really? That’s too much even for Hollywood. And more karma than even Bollywood would allow.

Real life is more like this:

And that’s what I love about baseball. Even when my team loses.