Apr 7, 2024

Juuuust A Bit Outside

Major League
Paramount Pictures (1989)
This is my favorite baseball movie of all time.  It features the Cleveland Indians as a basement-dwelling team that haven't had a World Series Championship season since 1948.  This was true in real life as well, and is still true to this day.  The team has since changed its name to the Cleveland Guardians and while the team isn't the train wreck that they were back in the 80's, they're considered a longshot to make the post-season in 2024.

The story of Major League is that the Indians owner has deliberately sabotaged her team to drive down attendance so that she can move the club out of Cleveland and to Miami.  Essentially, it's not too much different from what John Fisher is doing with the Oakland Athletics right now, except it's a lot funnier in fiction than it is in real life.

Pottsville Republican - Pottsville, PA  (April 14, 1989)
Times Leader - Wilkes Barre, PA  (April 28, 1989)

Major League premiered in theaters 35 years ago today.  I didn't catch it on the big screen back then, but I more than made up for it in the years that followed.  My dad owned it on VHS when we lived in South Florida, and it's no exaggeration to say that I watched that tape at least a hundred times.  It's my favorite baseball movie of all time, and one of the funniest comedy flicks of the 80's with a seemingly endless list of quotable lines that you'll still hear at ballparks around the country to this day.

Major League didn't have a video game presence in the United States, but there was a game that was loosely based on the film that was released for Famicom in Japan in the same year that the film was released.  There hasn't been a ton of other merchandise released based on the movie in the years since, but Topps released a pretty cool subset ten years ago that featured Tom BerengerCharlie Sheen, Corbin BernsenChelcie RossMargaret Whitton (along with Pedro Cerrano's friend Jobu) as the characters that they played in the film.