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Shout Factory presents
"That was the worst baserunning in the history of the game!"
DVD ReviewReally, what's funnier than a grown man playing a child's game getting hit in various parts of his anatomy with a hard little ball? It's time for the wild and wacky, and this brief, amusing documentary assembles lots and lots of clips of baseball players doing boneheaded things. Just because you make millions and are adored by the masses, you're not immune from doing the stupid stuff the rest of us do on a daily basis. Of course, for us civilians, there's no peril of having our day-to-day idiocies featured on ESPN.
Chris Kattan narrates, and as you might expect, there are a great number of stupid plays on the field—baseballs taken to the crotch, players tumbling into the stands, popups landing between infielders, each calling for the other to get it. Some of these are truly epic in their hilarity—my favorite would have to be Manny Ramirez, who leaps from left field to cut off centerfielder Johnny Damon's throw to the plate, allowing the opponents to score. Why an outfielder could possibly think he should be the cutoff man is beyond me, and you'll find other choice bits of Manny being Manny, including his mid-inning sojourn inside the Green Monster.
There's plenty of funny stuff off the field, as well—Alex Rodriguez driving in circles looking for the ballpark in Arizona; Bruce Chen trying to talk his way into an "I Love This Game" promo; Ryan Dempster, allegedly the biggest prankster in all of the majors. (All the down time on the road seems to lead to lots of practical jokes. Boys will be boys.) The Marlins grounds crew takes it on the chin, too, for their ineptitude in trying to get the tarp on the field in the middle of a rainstorm; and there's a sequence of various species of insects swarming players, cameras, and umps. Derek Jeter is the butt of jokes for being the master of the cliché, for talking without saying anything—he's just going to take it one game at a time, it's a long season, and he just wants to help the ball club. And there are little montages of stuff from three of the grand old men of the game—Casey Stengel, understood by himself alone; Tommy Lasorda, preaching the Dodger gospel between bites of pasta; and the bhagwan of the baseball quote, Yogi Berra.
There's not a lot to this, but it is kind of nice to see the ball players as human—not Adonises striding the earth, nor juiced-up mercenaries soiling the sport, but big kids knowing that they're getting away with something by being paid a king's ransom to play a child's game.
Rating for Style: B
Rating for Substance: B
Image Transfer Review: Adequately transferred, though the clips vary in quality, and the older ones—of Stengel particularly—are quite degraded.
Image Transfer Grade: B-
Audio Transfer Review: Some static on the audio track, but Kattan sounds all right, and the players are audible.
Audio Transfer Grade: B-
Disc ExtrasFull Motion menu with music
Scene Access with 9 cues and remote access
4 Other Trailer(s) featuring Pure Heat: Ultimate MLB Flamethrowers, Red Sox vs. Yankees: The Ultimate Rivalry, World Series 2005: Chicago White Sox, MLB Superstars Show You Their Game
Extras Review: The dozen featurettes are essentially extended tales of stories told in the feature—you'll find Bruce Chen and Steve Kline goofing, Mike Lieberthal's painful dance moves, Ryan Dempster's Harry Caray imitation, and Chad Cordero falling off the mound while throwing a pitch, among others.
Extras Grade: C+
Final CommentsA lighthearted diversion for baseball fans, the perfect disc to pop in during one of those inevitable rain delays.
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