The criteria is simple:
- The player has to be from a movie or TV show so no literary figures from Matt Christopher books.
- Player has to be fictional. While Babe Ruth and "Shoeless" Joe Jackson are characters in movies, they were also real-life players. That's no fun...
- No girls. Sorry Amanda Whurlitzer and the cast of A League of Their Own—no girls allowed on MLB rosters, no girls allowed on mine.
- No kids without major league talent. Apologies to Kelly Leak, Tanner Boyle, Engelberg, and Ham Porter.
- No animals with superhuman abilities. No Air Bud or that ape from the Matt Leblanc movie Ed.
- No antagonists unless they became antagonists later. Clu Heywood qualifies as a villain despite drawing serious consideration from the front office.
- Player has to be on a professional roster or mentioned playing at the professional level at some point in the movie or show – so no "Downtown" Anderson for you closet Major League III: Back to the Minors buffs.
The 25-man roster breakdown is as follows:
10 pitchers, 15 positions players
Hit the jump for the full roster!
Pos - Player - Movie/Show
SP - Steve Nebraska - The Scout
Nebraska pitched a perfect game in game one of the World Series (Yankees vs. Cardinals); 27 up, 27 down, 81 pitches, all strikes. The skipper also chose to forego using a DH to have Nebraska bat, and was rewarded with a homer in each plate appearance (or so we’re led to assume). With the most dominant performance in MLB history on his résumé, Nebraska is obviously the ace of this staff, and pitcher-pinch-hitter-a-la-Micah-Owings off the bench.
SP - Billy Chapel - For the Love of the Game
At 40 this guy is tossing perfect games for the worst team in baseball against the best team in baseball. Practically a shoe-in for the Hall of Fame and showing no signs of slowing down after that hand injury.
SP - Henry "Author" Wiggen - Bang the Drum Slowly
Wiggen was the ace of a World Series staff and one of the best clubhouse guys I could ever hope for. Of course he’ll be without his favorite catcher, but that won’t matter with the backstop I’m putting out there for him (take a wild guess).
SP - Ebby Calvin "Nuke" LaLoosh - Bull Durham
I have faith in this kid. The Gods reached down and turned his right arm into a thunderbolt. He’s got a Hall-of-Fame arm... let’s hope he doesn’t piss it away. We’re still working on his curveball but this kid has shown me enough to be my fourth starter.
SP - Ryan Dunne - Summer Catch
What? You’ve never seen this movie? I envy you—it was atrocious. Nevertheless this lefty cannon-hand played by Freddy Prinze Jr. was one of the fastest-rising stars in baseball movie history. He went from Cape Cod league to the Bigs in a matter of weeks. Even though his first pitch in the Majors was a homer to Ken Griffey Jr., his minor league résumé includes a combined perfect game where he went 8 2/3 innings before jeopardizing his career and leaving said game for a girl (Jessica Biel…I guess I can’t blame him???). Still, young, southpaw fireballers are hard to come by in cinema and real-life alike so I’ll jump at the opportunity to employ this youngster.
RP/LR - Eddie Harris - Major League
Veteran, crafty, rubber arm… Good for a spot start and lots of relief innings.
RP - Kenny Powers - Eastbound and Down
When he’s on the juice he’s the best in baseball. I’ll turn a blind eye to get this guy on my staff. Plus his catch phrase "YOU’RE FUCKIN’ OUT" is exactly what I need to get butts in seats.
RP - Sam Malone - Cheers
We’re in negotiations to hire Johnny Narron to keep an eye on Malone so he doesn’t revert back to his old ways. I think Sam still has some juice left in that arm to give me 40-50 innings.
RP - Henry Rowengartner - Rookie of the Year
He might be a 6th grader, but he throws gas. We’ll do everything we can to keep him healthy.
CL - Rick "Wild Thing" Vaughn - Major League I and II
You never know what you’re going to get from "Wild Thing", but when he’s on, he’ll strike out any melon-farmer in baseball. I don’t want any frills, just give me that 102 MPH Terminator.
CF - Willy Mays Hayes - Major League
I want "Wesley Snipes" Hayes, not "Omar Epps" Hayes. Sure they’re supposed to be the same player, but Snipes had far more athleticism, speed, and dedication to the game than Epps. What ballplayer jeopardizes his career by doing his own stunts in an action movie? Give me a break, Epps…
LF - Bobby Rayburn - The Fan
Yeah, he’s played by Wesley Snipes too… big whoop, wanna fight about it? He’s a stud who is loved and obsessed over by fans and knife salesmen alike. I’ll be sure to give him whatever number he wants just so these knife salesmen don’t get any bright ideas…
RF - Roy Hobbs - The Natural
Ah yes, the legend who struck out "The Whammer". A gunshot wound? *scoff* Even at the age of 35, Hobbs is tearing the cover off the ball (literally!) with a lightning-bolt-infused, homemade bat. Imagine what he would do to the jumbotrons of today with one of those newfangled maple bats. Probably nothing because a.) the bat would explode on contact and b.) those LED screens are supposed to be pretty durable.
DH - Jack Parkman - Major League II
His shimmy is unprecedented and he’ll strike fear into just about every opposing pitcher in the league. In his total on-screen plate appearances, he’s 2-for-3 with two homers and a strikeout—I like those numbers. Note how specific I was in my antagonist rule solely to include this guy on my team.
C - Crash Davis - Bull Durham
He’s been around forever and will be a key veteran clubhouse guy for the young guys to look up to. He can hit too as evidenced by his holding of the all-time minor league career home run record.
1B - Lou Collins - Little Big League
It’s mentioned in the movie that Lou holds a career average well above .300 so it’s a shame he was robbed of a homerun by Ken Griffey Jr. to make the last out of a one-game playoff that would have sent the Twins to the ALDS. For what it’s worth, this movie has some excellent baseball action and includes tons of cameos from real ballplayers like Kevin Elster and Mickey Tettleton (among others).
2B - Dennis Ryan - Take Me Out to the Ballgame
I saw this movie with my grandparents when I was about 7 but I’ll never forget how graceful Frank Sinatra was during the musical numbers and how well that must translate to the diamond. Light on his feet but not in the loafers, Old Blue Eyes is key to solid defense up the middle.
3B - Roger Dorn - Major League
Notice I didn’t put Major League II where Roger Dorn inexplicably went from a solid infielder to old, fat team owner in one offseason. Give me the Dorn who manned the hot corner and wasn’t afraid to deck the crap out of a teammate after the biggest win in franchise history. That guy ain’t so fuckin’ bad.
SS - Eddie O'Brien - Take Me Out to the Ballgame
See Dennis Ryan but replace Frank Sinatra with Gene Kelly. That’s basically all I remember from this movie.
OF - Pedro Cerrano - Major League I and II
Putting Pedro on the roster shows fans how seriously I take religious tolerance. However, he’ll have to learn how to hit a curveball and not whiff by four feet if he wants to earn a starting position.
IF/OF - Benny "The Jet" Rodriguez - The Sandlot
I need a solid utility player and speedster for late-game replacements, so who better than the guy who pickled The Beast and steals home after taking suicide leads. Best mustache on the team, without a doubt.
OF - Bump Bailey - The Natural
Bump is one of those guys who is going to give 110%, let the chips fall where they may, and leave it all out on the field (his mutilated corpse included). All clichés aside, I’m going to assume that current-day field regulations are in place so that when he crashes into the wall, he doesn’t die. I don’t want to have to bring "Downtown" Anderson up from the minors—that kid ain’t ready yet.
1B - Jack Elliot - Mr. Baseball
Another veteran slugger who has World Series MVP honors under his belt and a character-building experience playing Japanese baseball. I don’t particularly need him for his defense anymore, but I’ll be happy if he gives me some good pinch-hit AB and some spot starts here or there. Second-best mustache.
IF - Mickey Scales - Little Big League
Great speed off the bench and can play a few infield spots. This rookie could be the next Dennis Ryan if he keeps his dugout antics to a minimum.
OF - Darryl Palmer - The Slugger’s Wife
Under one condition, we keep that girl of his around at all times. Who knew scrawny old Danny Noonan could challenge Roger Maris’s single-season homerun record? "Steroids?" you say? Nope… Poontang.
Manager - Pop Fisher - The Natural
Bench - Lou Brown - Major League
1B - Jake Taylor - Major League II
3B - Jimmy Dugan - A League of Their Own
Pitching - Montgomery Brewster - Brewster’s Millions