erik lundegaard

Ranking Baseball Movies with Jerry Grillo

Jerry Grillo is an editor at Georgia Trend magazine, a freelance writer, a husband and father and son and baseball fan and all-around mensch. His blog is “Notes from the Grillo Pad.” He is the creator and chronicler of “Joe on the Go,” an ongoing community-engagement project created by his wife, Jane, about their son. Here's Jerry's post on meeting Hank Aaron. He's been trying to get me to see “Long Gone,” his No. 1 pick, for a while now, but I can't do VHS anymore. I'll need to wait until the DVD. Or streaming. Netflix?

Jerry's Baseball Movie Rankings

1. Long Gone (1987)
2. Bull Durham (1988)
3. Ken Burns’ Baseball (1994)
4. The Natural (1984)
5. 61* (2001)
6. Eight Men Out (1988)
7. Moneyball (2011)
8. 42 (2013)
9. The Life and Times of Hank Greenberg (1998)
10. Field of Dreams (1989)
11. The Rookie (2002)
12. A League of Their Own (1992)
13. Major League (1989)
14. The Bad News Bears (1976)
15. For Love of the Game (1999)
16. Bang the Drum Slowly (1973)
17. The Pride of the Yankees (1942)
18. Sugar (2008)
19. Jews and Baseball: An American Love Story (2010)
20. The Perfect Game (2009)
21. Bingo Long Traveling All-Stars and Motor Kings (1976)
22. Fear Strikes Out (1957)
23. Cobb (1994)
24. Damn Yankees! (1958)
25. The Final Season (2007)
26. Pastime (1990)
27. The Scout (1994)
28. Talent for the Game (1991)
29. Angels in the Outfield (1994)
30. Mr. 3000 (2004)
31. Fever Pitch (2005)
32. It Happens Every Spring (1949)
33. Bad News Bears (2005)
34. Little Big League (1994)
35. The Sandlot (1993)
36. Rookie of the Year (1993)
37. Calvin Marshall (2010)
38. The Pride of St. Louis (1952)
39. The Jackie Robinson Story (1950)
40. The Stratton Story (1948)
41. Mr. Baseball (1992)
42. The Babe (1992)
43. The Babe Ruth Story (1948)

Jerry's comments

My list gets really fuzzy after the first 15 or 20, a lot of also-rans. For example, I might actually enjoy watching “The Babe Ruth Story” for the unintentional humor factor (45-year-old William Bendix playing 19-year-old Babe Ruth always makes me laugh), and that might elevate it from last place, depending on mood. “Pride of the Yankees” gets a good billing here because I'm feeling nostalgic, and it was always my dad's favorite. Some of the also-rans I barely remember. Also, loved the “When It Was a Game” documentaries, but not sure where I'd rank those. I like this baseball invention better than the aluminum bat. Way better.

Your turn

Rank the Baseball Movies.

HBO's "Long Gone" with William Peterson and Virginia Madsen

The 1987 HBO movie, “Long Gone,” with William Peterson and Virginia Madsen, about players who never made it to the bigs, has never made it to DVD.


Posted at 06:31 AM on Fri. Apr 26, 2013 in category Baseball  
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