Thursday, June 25, 2009

Off-Season Pastimes: Sugar

"People ask me what I do in winter when there's no baseball. I'll tell you what I do. I stare out the window and wait for spring." (Rogers Hornsby)

What can the avid college baseball fan do in the off-season to stave off the dreaded baseball-deprivation blues?

Watch a Baseball Movie: Sugar

You may have to do some searching to find a place to watch Sugar, the great baseball movie I saw the other night. It's currently out in theaters, but may only be in art-house or independent venues, like Ragtag Cinema in Columbia, where I watched it the other night.

It's in limited distribution because it's about 70% in Spanish, with subtitles.

Now, I know that the average macho baseball fan just laughed and said to himself, I'm not going to a movie with subtitles. I have to agree, I'm not a fan of subtitles either. But for this movie it is worth it.

The movie is a fictional account of a Dominican ballplayer (nicknamed "Sugar") who plays at a major league baseball academy in the Dominican Republic and finally gets his call-up to the minor leagues in America.

I found the first quarter of the movie interesting because I know that former Tiger Jayce Tingler is currently the manager/director of the Texas Rangers' baseball academy in the Dominican Republic. this movie gave me an idea of what his job must be like.

The awkwardness of the Spanish speaking and English subtitles actually plays into the whole theme of the movie, because it helps the audience to relate the language and culture barriers faced by Sugar as he tries to make it in American baseball.

I really can't do the movie justice by my description, other than to say that if you are a true fan of baseball, you'll enjoy this film. But don't expect a typical Hollywood-style ending. As one reviewer said, you'll think you know how it's going to end, but you don't.

SUGAR: Movie Trailer - Funny bloopers R us

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