Friday, March 31, 2006

Walt Whitman once said, "I see great things in baseball. It's our game, the American game. It will repair our losses and be a blessing to us."

The 2006 baseball season is almost here which gets me to thinking about averages and home runs and of course, my beloved Red Sox. That means it's also time for the best baseball movie ever - Bull Durham.

"C'mon Meat, throw me that weak-ass shit!"

Bull Durham tells of a season in minor league baseball for the Durham Bulls. Kevin Costner plays Crash Davis, a catcher who's been in the minors for a while, and been brought in to baby sit their hot young pitcher, Ebby Calvin "Nuke" LaLoosh, played by Tim Robbins.

"Well, I believe in the soul, the cock, the pussy, the small of a woman's back, the hanging curve ball, high fiber, good scotch, that the novels of Susan Sontag are self-indulgent, overrated crap. I believe Lee Harvey Oswald acted alone. I believe there ought to be a constitutional amendment outlawing Astroturf and the designated hitter. I believe in the sweet spot, soft-core pornography, opening your presents Christmas morning rather than Christmas Eve and I believe in long, slow, deep, soft, wet kisses that last three days."

Nuke has a "million dollar arm and a 5-cent head," and is wild off the field as he is on the mound. Susan Sarandon plays Annie Savoy, the town hottie who knows more about baseball than the coaches or scouts and takes on a player each year for baseball lessons and a little tutorial in the art of love-making.

Cute? Baby ducks are cute, I HATE cute! I want to be exotic, and mysterious!"

The movie has great humor and terrific baseball. Costner is charming, witty and sexy. Robbins is all arms and legs on the mound, and accurately portrays Nuke's physical and mental awkwardness and quirkiness on and off the field. Sarandon's sassy Annie Savoy is what every woman wants to be, she is smart and sexy.

"Yeah? From what I hear, you couldn't hit water if you fell out of a fucking boat."

Bull Durham was a star-making vehicle for everyone involved- Costner became a bigger star, Sarandon started her big comeback that led to an Oscar for Dead Man Walking a few years later, Robbins never looked back, and writer/director Ron Shelton has been making movies in Hollywood ever since.

It's baseball season my friends. My days and nights will now be occupied until October with base runners and fly balls and 7th inning stretches and "Sweet Caroline". I love this game!

"A good friend of mine used to say, "This is a very simple game. You throw the ball, you catch the ball, you hit the ball. Sometimes you win, sometimes you lose, sometimes it rains." Think about that for a while."

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