For the final part of this series, I’d like to mention my runner up in this mess. In the end, Moneyball just doesn’t move fast enough for me to make my top six. Don’t get me wrong, it’s a fantastic movie and it was close to making the list. Brad Pitt did a fantastic job of portraying a major league general manager. Whether he truly portrayed Billy Beane or not, I don’t know, but the way he describes his competitive nature is perfect.
Beane: You get on base, we win. You don’t we lose. And I hate losing, Chavy. I hate it. I hate losing more than I even wanna win.
Unfortunately, I can relate to this too well.
Let’s wave this home.
The Sandlot (1993)
If you can go a day without referencing this movie, I don’t know what you’re doing with your life. The Sandlot shows us how applicable to our daily life baseball really is. No matter how big of a pickle you get yourself into, you can always get out of it if you work hard enough.
Ham and Squints drop some real knowledge in this one as Ham teaches Scotty Smalls about Babe Ruth, how to make a s’more and shows us all proper ball field banter. Squints showed us all that courage prevails, especially when it comes to getting the girl. As a bonus, Babe Ruth himself taught us that heroes get remembered, but legends never die.
Bull Durham (1988)
It’s not only my favorite baseball movie, but Bull Durham tops my list of greatest movies ever. That’s right. After watching Bull Durham, baseball games are more enjoyable for even the casual observer. With all the visits Crash Davis pays to the mound to school Ebby Calvin “Nuke” LaLoosh, stoppages in baseball become more enjoyable by getting a brief glimpse into the conversation. Like Ham in The Sandlot, Crash is a wise, veteran catcher that drops some knowledge on Nuke, and viewers, with these quality nuggets.
“Don’t try to strike everybody out. Strikeouts are boring! Besides that they’re fascist. Throw some ground balls, it’s more democratic … And don’t hold the ball so hard, OK? It’s an egg. Hold it like an egg.”
“You be cocky and arrogant, even when you’re getting beat. That’s the secret. You’ve got to play this game with fear and arrogance.”
“You never f*** with a winning streak.”
And of course, “The rose goes in the front, big guy.”
I could go on forever, but we’ll leave it with these gems. Watching Bull Durham is an Opening Day tradition in my house, and, if you don’t mind the language, is a classic movie for any level of baseball fan.