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Rookie of the Year (1993)

 -  Comedy | Family | Fantasy  -  7 July 1993 (USA)
5.8
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Ratings: 5.8/10 from 14,272 users  
Reviews: 34 user | 15 critic

When an accident miraculously gives a boy an incredibly powerful pitching arm, he becomes a major league pitcher for the Chicago Cubs.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Chet Steadman
...
Martinella
Amy Morton ...
Mary Rowengartner
...
Larry 'Fish' Fisher
...
Jack Bradfield
...
Bob Carson
...
Clark (as Robert Gorman)
Patrick LaBrecque ...
George
...
Colombe Jacobsen-Derstine ...
Becky
Kristie Davis ...
Tiffany
Tyler Ann Carroll ...
Edith
Tom Milanovich ...
Heddo
Ross Lehman ...
Dr. Kersten
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Storyline

12-year-old Henry Rowengartner, whose late father was a minor league baseball player, grew up dreaming of playing baseball, despite his physical shortcomings. Although he's close to his mother Mary, Henry hates Mary's latest boyfriend, Jack Bradfield. After Henry's arm is broken while trying to catch a baseball at school, the tendon in that arm heals too tightly, allowing Henry to throw pitches that are as fast as 103 mph. Henry is spotted at nearby Wrigley Field by Larry "Fish" Fisher, the general manager of the struggling Chicago Cubs, after Henry throws an opponent's home-run ball all the way from the outfield bleachers back to the catcher, and it seems that Henry may be the pitcher that team owner Bob Carson has been praying for. At first, Cubs manager Sal Martinella doesn't like Henry being on the team, but despite the rawness of his talent, Henry revives everyone's team spirit and reignites the enthusiasm of the fans. While money hungry Jack pulls strings behind the scenes to ... Written by Todd Baldridge

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The Chicago Cubs needed a miracle... they got Henry Rowengartner. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for some mild language | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

7 July 1993 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Az év újonca  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Gross:

$53,579,269 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

When Henry's mother (Amy Morton) is celebrating Henry scoring a run after being walked, she hits her head on the lamp hanging above her (at around 57 mins). Morton obviously didn't mean to do this: she is visibly hurt and after sitting down mutters "oh... shit" (at 57:46, which is dubbed out on the audio, you have to lip-read). See more »

Goofs

When Henry throws the opposing Home Run back to home plate from the bleachers (at around 42 mins), the runner is deemed "safe" by the umpire. Though the ball had been hit as a home run and there would be no reason for a player to slide into home, this would have more than likely been the first time that the umpire and the player who hit the home run had experienced this, and therefore had no idea what to do. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Cliff Murdoch - Announcer: Opening Day at Wrigley, and oh what a sight! The diamond, the decorations, and the dread of yet another losing season.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Special thanks are given to "The people of Chicago who never give up" See more »


Soundtracks

You Don't Know What You Got
Written by Walter Kahn, Tom Uzzo and Deborah Stevens
Performed by Karen Young
Courtesy of Sunshine Entertainment Corp.
See more »

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User Reviews

Bringing the fun back to baseball
20 November 2004 | by (Hilo, HI) – See all my reviews

This movie asks the question: "What if pro baseball was fun again, like in little league, and not so taken so seriously?" The device of Henry's miraculous arm allows the story to inject a kid's eye view into a somewhat cynical world. Juxtaposing the sleazy Dan Hedaya's attempted $25 million trade of Henry to the Yankees with the Henry and his buddies taking a day trip on a boat, as well as Henry's adolescent antics on the field, director Daniel Stern is trying to get us to look at baseball, and maybe sports, maybe life, like we did when we were ten.

I think Roger Ebert, although I agree with his review, took pretty poor notes while reviewing this film. From his article: "When the cast comes off, his dad takes him to Wrigley Field, and he catches a home run ball while he's out in the bleachers, and then he throws it back - all the way to the catcher behind the plate." Actually, he went with his friends, he doesn't even know his dad. And he didn't catch it, his friends pick it up from nearby, and hand it to him because they're scared to throw it on TV and embarrass themselves. Doesn't he have a fact-checker to proof his reviews?

Second, he writes: "Henry becomes an overnight celebrity, and is signed to the Cubs by the team's genial owner." This ignores the desperation of Dan Hedaya, the would-be owner of the team, who sees the publicity and marketing windfall in having a kid on the team. The sell-out crowd is an important story element, as it reinforces the idea that we are all hungry for baseball to be fun again.

There's are lots of laughs to be had in this film, although Stern seems to want to indulge in over-the-top hysterics from time to time, such as with the character he was playing. Also, the bilious "Jack" who gets Henry's mom to sign a contract without telling her it's a trade to NY, is downright spastic in his final scene. Stern shows a lot of promise as a comedy director if he could tone it down just a touch with the tangential characters. Understatement can be funny, as Busey shows with a few choice glares at the right moments. I loved Stern's allusion to the Wizard of Oz, likening the Emerald City gates to the Wrigley stadium gates, when Henry first arrives to play.

The Cubs haven't won a Series since 1909. "And a little child shall lead them..." Every kid should see this movie.


3 of 4 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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