This week’s #52PickUp stars Kevin from American Pie, Marv from Home Alone, Gary Busey from those Amazon Fire Stick Commercials, THE Dan Hedaya, and The Janitor from Scrubs:
I didn’t want to watch Rookie of the Year for my first year of #52PickUp, and it was on the “maybe” list for this season (that or Angels in the Outfield). But as the night went on, and I knew I had desperately needed to watch two movies before we recorded the next episodes of Not Quite Hollywood, I chose this for its satisfyingly short one hour and forty-three minute runtime. Wait, what? That’s too long. Shit.
Rookie of the Year is the story of the (then-failing) Chicago Cubs, and their act of desperation to save the franchise. But it’s ALSO about a kid named Henry Rosenbagger (or is it, Rowengartner?), as he injures himself to greatness (and exploitation) within the MLB. But seriously Cubs, you were twenty-three years too early.
Henry’s Mom is dating this over-the-top douchebag who weasels his way into becoming Henry’s manager (and already tries to play Step-Dad). This guy is so driven to madness by the prospect of 10% of everything that Henry makes, that he turns violent when Henry doesn’t want to be traded to the Yankees.
Come to think of it, this side plot was much darker than I remembered… He was seconds away from smacking Henry around at the end.
Henry’s arm heals tight over the summer, and by the fall, he gets signed to play as a pitcher for the Cubbies. Huh, they never mention a tutor during all of this. I mean, he had to have started school before the divisional playoffs, right?!
One of my many childhood crushes is in this film as well. She would go onto play Julie “The Cat” Gaffney from Bangor, Maine in D2: The Mighty Ducks. Now, she’s a TV chef, and still as beautiful as ever.
What’s the franchise like?
Bizarrely, the only “sequel” that we can see from Rookie of the Year, is falling down the rabbit hole that is Daniel Stern’s YouTube page as he revives his Brickma character.
Where/ when did I first see it?
The world we live in… When I first watched this film in the winter of 1993, I never thought I would recognize a below the line worker on this film, until now.
This was cast by Linda Lowy. Yeah, you may not know who she is, but with my job here in LA, I’ve recently contacted her directly via email. There was no WAY I could have known that I would email someone who was involved with this movie when it came out, but then again, now it’s not really a big deal. Still, my younger self would be losing his mind! God, I love time travel. I think of it way too often.
How does it hold up?
Now, I’m not much of a baseball fan. Really at all. I’ve seen a game live (Yankees VS the K.C. Royals at the old Yankees Stadium in 2007, if you were wondering), but it didn’t matter because this film was entertaining, funny, and had a lot of heart. Wow, come to think of it; for someone that doesn’t like sports all that much, I’ve done a few sports movies here.
I mean, it HAS to be Brickma, right?
Daniel Stern was one of THE funnymen of the 90s. Between this, the Home Alone movies, Bushwhacked, and the City Slickers movies, he had a great run. But did you know that he also directed Rookie of the Year? No?
Now you know.
- Alway use Hot Ice, “It’s the best of both worlds!”
- Icy Hot must have stolen that idea.
- Break your arm, kids. You’ll be famous. *
- *No, you’ll be in a body cast. Don’t do it.
Where can you see it?
Check out Rookie of the Year on CanIStream.It?