“Play ball!” is shouted
to begin each game.
But love of baseball
won’t guarantee fame.
Time in the Minors, an involving documentary from filmmaker Tony Okun, shows how hard it is to become a Major League baseball player. Only ten percent of the 1500 new amateur players drafted from high schools and colleges each season finally end up playing in the major league. Okun’s film follows two men, Tony Schrager and John Drennen, as they spend time in the minor leagues while hoping to be called up to the majors.
Both Tony and John love the game. They have since childhood. And they’re very talented indeed. When drafted for the minors, each one has high hopes, makes sacrifices, works hard, faces stiff competition, and meets with successes as well as failures. Because of their dedication to baseball, we can’t help cheering them on much like their parents -- and in Tony’s case, wife -- do. Okun (The Park) does an excellent job of building suspense concerning how things will turn out for Tony and John.
Although I’m not a baseball fan, one of my favorite movies is The Rookie (based on a true story) starring Dennis Quaid as a middle-aged teacher and family man who gets a second chance to achieve his dream of becoming a Major League pitcher. Quaid’s sensitive portrayal really got to me -- and my heart went out to him when he showed a deep sadness at missing his family on the road. I had that same feeling about Tony and John while watching Time in the Minors.
I also felt drawn into this documentary because of the skillful way Okun presents revealing personal interviews interspersed with relevant ballpark action. Plus I learned a great deal about the physical and mental obstacles facing anyone who gets drafted into the minors and hopes to become a Major League player. Time in the Minors and The Rookie should be a must-see double feature for these individuals!
(Released by Oh! Show Productions; not rated by MPAA.)
For more information about Time in the Minors, go to the Internet Movie Data Base or Rotten Tomatoes website.