Henry Wiggen (Author to his friends) and Bruce Pearson are members of the New York Mammoths major league baseball team - Author the star pitcher, Bruce the catcher who never quite lived up to his potential - friends, and roommates when they're on the road. During the off season, Bruce is diagnosed with a terminal case of Hodgkin's disease. Author is the only person on the team who knows of Bruce's illness, with neither planning on telling anyone. Author takes extraordinary measures to ensure that he is playing ball with Bruce during what will probably be Bruce's final season before he can no longer play. Author looks after Bruce in part because Bruce is mentally a simple man who can easily be taken advantage of, especially by his opportunistic girlfriend Katie. As the season progresses, the team isn't quite gelling, despite being the best team on paper. But as information comes to light, the dynamic on the team changes to make it a memorable end of the season especially for Bruce, who... Written by
Did You Know?
First produced as an hour-long live TV drama in 1956 on the United States Steel Hour, with Paul Newman as Henry Wiggen and Albert Salmi as Bruce Pearson. See more
During Piney's song in the clubhouse, coach Joe is shown holding the deck of cards in his hand. The next cut shows him with all the cards spread out on the table. No time has passed since the song is marking the time. See more
Everybody'd be nice to you if they knew you were dying.
Everybody knows everybody is dying; that's why people are as good as they are.
Referenced in Night on Earth
Bang the Drum Slowly
Music by Stephen Lawrence
Lyrics by Bruce Hart See more