Bottom of the 9th

I came across this movie, Bottom of the 9th, during my last trip to the library and decided I’d go ahead and check it out. This flick stars Joe Manganiello as Sonny Stano, once an up-and-coming star in the Yankees organization who finds himself spending 17 years in prison when an altercation results in the death of another young man.

The main plot of the film takes place following Stano’s release from prison back onto the streets of the Bronx. He is noticeably older-looking than the young man who had once been sentenced to prison, with a larger, more muscular build and hair graying at the temples. He is plagued with guilt over the mistakes from his youth and is determined to walk a straighter path going forward.

Stano begins his life after prison working in a fish market, but hates the work. He is drawn back to baseball and the Empires, a minor league affiliate of the Yankees. Before long, Stano quits his job at the fish market in order to join the staff of the Empires.

It quickly becomes apparent to the coaching staff of the Empires that Stano, in spite of his age and his time away from the game, still possesses no small amount of baseball talent. Stano is soon added to the Empires roster, much to the dismay of the other players on the team, the fans, and the media. Unsurprisingly, he suffers criticism over his past, every little move he now makes, and every statement he speaks.

From here, the movie is essentially a cliché redemption story (but if you’re not familiar with such cliché stories, stop reading here). Stano proves himself on the field, most people’s opinions eventually turn in his favor, he gets the girl, and he impresses the scouts from the Yankees organization who are considering calling him up to the big leagues.

Overall, this movie’s not bad. It’s not a magical home run classic baseball movie — there are no surprising twists in the story, no sitting-on-the-edge-of-your-seat moments of suspense. It’s mostly a laid back and predictable feel-good story.

This day in baseball: DiMaggio named AL MVP

On November 11, 1941, the American League Most Valuable Player Award went to Joe DiMaggio, who hit 30 home runs, 125 RBIs, and collected 348 total bases. DiMaggio also led the Yankees to a 101-53 season that culminated with their ninth World Series title. In the midst of all of this, the Yankee Clipper also had a Major League-record 56-game hitting streak along the way.

DiMaggio edged out Ted Williams in the voting for the award. Williams remains the last player to finish a season with a .400 average, doing so when he hit .406 in 1941. Williams’s season won him the American League batting title by a whopping 47 points that year, however, his efforts fell short in the league’s MVP voting.

2022 League Championship Series schedule

In spite of a couple delays in the Division Series games, the winners of each series have been determined, and tonight kicks off the American League and National League Championship Series. Here is the schedule for the ALCS and NLCS, all times Eastern.

Tuesday, Oct. 18
NLCS Game 1, Phillies @ Padres, 8:03 p.m., FS1

Wednesday, Oct. 19
NLCS Game 2, Phillies @ Padres, 4:35 p.m., FOX or FS1
ALCS Game 1, Yankees @ Astros, 7:37 p.m., TBS

Thursday, Oct. 20
ALCS Game 2, Yankees @ Astros, 7:37 p.m., TBS

Friday, Oct. 21
NLCS Game 3, Padres @ Phillies, 7:37 p.m., FS1

Saturday, Oct. 22
ALCS Game 3, Astros @ Yankees, 5:07 p.m., TBS
NLCS Game 4, Padres @ Phillies, 7:45 p.m., FOX

Sunday, Oct. 23
NLCS Game 5, Padres @ Phillies, 2:37 p.m., FS1 (if necessary)
ALCS Game 4, Astros @ Yankees, 7:07 p.m., TBS

Monday, Oct. 24
ALCS Game 5, Astros @ Yankees, 4:07 p.m., TBS (if necessary)
NLCS Game 6, Phillies @ San Diego, 8:03 p.m., FS1 (if necessary)

Tuesday, Oct. 25
ALCS Game 6, Yankees @ Astros, 6:07 p.m., TBS (if necessary)
NLCS Game 7, Phillies @ Padres, 8:03 p.m., FOX or FS1 (if necessary)

Wednesday, Oct. 26
ALCS Game 7, Yankees @ Astros, 7:37 p.m., TBS (if necessary)

Updated Division Series schedule

Due to inclement weather, Game 2 of the Yankees-Guardians series was postponed from yesterday to today. Aside from that, the remain games of the Division Series now have start times! Here is how the updated schedule is looking — all times Eastern.

Friday, October 14th
Game 2: Guardians vs. Yankees, 1:07 p.m., TBS
Game 3: Braves vs. Phillies, 4:37 p.m., FS1
Game 3: Dodgers vs. Padres, 8:37 p.m., FS1

Saturday, October 15th
Game 4: Braves vs. Phillies, 2:07 p.m., FS1
Game 4: Dodgers vs. Padres, 9:37 p.m., FS1
Game 3: Yankees vs. Guardians, 7:37 p.m., TBS
Game 3: Astros vs. Mariners, 4:07 p.m., TBS

Sunday, October 16th
Game 4: Yankees vs. Guardians (if necessary), 7:07 p.m., TBS
Game 4: Astros vs. Mariners 4 (if necessary), 3:07 p.m., TBS
Game 5: Braves vs. Phillies (if necessary), 4:37 p.m., FS1
Game 5: Dodgers vs. Padres (if necessary), 9:07 p.m., FS1

Monday, October 17th
Game 5: Yankees vs. Guardians (if necessary), 7:37 p.m., TBS
Game 5: Astros vs. Mariners (if necessary), 5:07 p.m., TNT

2022 MLB Division Series

The Wild Card round is now over, and it is on to the American League and National League Division Series. Congrats to the Phillies, Padres, Mariners, and Guardians on advancing! Here are how the schedules for the ALDS and NLDS are looking thus far. Unfortunately, times have only been set for Games 1 and 2 in the series. All times are Eastern.

Tuesday, October 11th
Game 1: Braves vs. Phillies, 1:07 p.m., Fox
Game 1: Astros vs. Mariners, 3:05 p.m., TBS
Game 1: Yankees vs. Guardians, 6:38 p.m., TBS
Game 1: Dodgers vs. Padres 9:37 p.m., FS1

Wednesday, October 12th
Game 2: Braves vs. Phillies, 4:35 p.m., Fox
Game 2: Dodgers vs. Padres, 8:37 p.m., FS1

Thursday, October 13th
Game 2: Astros vs. Mariners, 3:37 p.m., TBS
Game 2: Yankees vs. Guardians, 7:37 p.m., TBS

Friday, October 14th
Game 3: Braves vs. Phillies, TBD, FS1
Game 3: Dodgers vs. Padres, TBD, FS1

Saturday, October 15th
Game 4: Braves vs. Phillies (if necessary), TBD, FS1
Game 4: Dodgers vs. Padres (if necessary), TBD, FS1
Game 3: Yankees vs. Guardians, TBD, TBS
Game 3: Astros vs. Mariners, TBD, TBS

Sunday, October 16th
Game 4: Yankees vs. Guardians (if necessary), TBD, TBS
Game 4: Astros vs. Mariners 4 (if necessary), TBD, TBS
Game 5: Braves vs. Phillies (if necessary), TBD, FS1
Game 5: Dodgers vs. Padres (if necessary), TBD, FS1

Monday, October 17th
Game 5: Yankees vs. Guardians (if necessary), TBD, TBS
Game 5: Astros vs. Mariners (if necessary), TBD, TBS

This day in baseball: The Yankees surpass 2 million attendance mark

On August 25, 1946, the New York Yankees became the first team to draw over two million paying patrons in a season when 42,908 fans showed up at Yankee Stadium to watch the Bronx Bombers take on the Detroit Tigers. The Yankees would lose the contest, 7-2, facing Detroit pitcher Hal Newhouser.

The original Yankee Stadium, 1923 (public domain)

Quote of the day

A catcher must want to catch. He must make up his mind that it isn’t the terrible job it is painted, and that he isn’t going to say every day, ‘Why, oh why with so many other positions in baseball did I take up this one.

~Bill Dickey

Bill_Dickey_1937_cropped
Bill Dickey, 1937 (Library of Congress)