Action / Documentary


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June 20, 2016 at 11:54 AM



Kevin Costner as Narrator
Chris Cooper as Clifford Blankenship
Derek Jeter as Himself
720p 1080p
631.49 MB
23.976 fps
1hr 27 min
P/S 10 / 49
1.31 GB
23.976 fps
1hr 27 min
P/S 5 / 38

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by classicsoncall 8 / 10

"You don't teach people how to throw fast. It just comes natural".

My following of Major League Baseball and professional sports in general sort of faded when big time money entered the arena. Having played Little League and Babe Ruth Ball, I'll still occasionally check the standings, but would be hard pressed to name the winner of the last World Series. So my interest in checking out this documentary had more to do with the science and mechanics of fastball pitching, and on that score I think it delivers pretty well.

Over the span of baseball eras, it's still an open question of who the fastest pitcher ever might have been, and it's likely that it will remain so. The earliest attempt to record pitching speed goes back to 1912 when Walter Johnson threw into a wired contraption that set off a timer; his throw clocked at one hundred twenty two feet per second, or in present day language, about eighty three point two miles per hour. That doesn't sound very fast by today's standards, but a modern day calculation demonstrated in the documentary upped that number considerably.

One humorous attempt to demonstrate Bob Feller's pitching speed involved a competition against a motorcycle. Feller beat the guy on the bike handily, and it was neat to see the former great explaining some pitching methodology to a youngster. The invention of the radar gun brought scientific measurement of pitching speed into the modern age in the Seventies, and a number of present day, active and retired big leaguers were interviewed on the mechanics and intimidation factor involved in pitching against competent hitters.

To give one an idea how out of touch I am with the Big League scene, I didn't even recognize names like Aroldis Chapman or Craig Gimbrel, my baseball era would have included guys like Koufax and Gibson, both of whom are also featured here. There's a brief aside on 'the fastest who never was', pitcher Steve Dalkowski, who's control was next to negligible but who had a fearsome reputation with a few of the guest interviewees like Al Kaline and Hank Aaron. That's Dalkowski's quote in my summary line above, a bit ironic and sad actually. He appeared in the film as well, looking defeated by life for having missed out on his life's passion.

They call baseball a game of inches, and in the case of professional pitchers, those inches can add up when you're talking the difference between a ninety two and a hundred mile per hour fastball. That difference is demonstrated graphically, along with a myriad number of insights into such areas as trajectories, magnus forces and speed. It might be a bit much for the casual viewer to follow, but anyone with a keen interest in the science of fastball pitching will find it all fascinating. Even pitchers seem to be in awe of the science, case in point one Dave Price who can tell you with exact precision the time he threw a hundred mile per hour fastball - in a 2010 game against Detroit against Johnny Peralta. Talk about a lasting impression!

Reviewed by brooksrob1 10 / 10

baseball lover porn...:)

I was spellbound watching all my hero's from a half century of loving baseball. I saw many of these guys play in real life ( live in Philly, my home) We boo'd Morgan and Ryan and even Shmitty but, as I enter my autumn years I have a better appreciation for their talents.

This movie is titled aptly. It is a history of the fastball and it is done like no other movie about the fast pitch I have ever seen. Seeing guys like Jeter, Brett and others showing that, while they are hitting gods; the pitcher is the real demon to slay...I have a new fondness for Nolan Ryan and Goose Gossage that I didn't have before...Goose is quite the character...I wish some Philly pitchers were in there like Shilling or Carlton but I guess they wanted the most awesome pitchers of all...

Great movie for older and young...

Reviewed by Joseph Pollard ([email protected]) 8 / 10

Interesting film

Nearing 60, I have been a fan of the game since a child, and remember a lot of the mystique associated with some of the older players. I found the premise of the film very attractive and the production very good. Kevin Costner was a natural narrator for show, with all of his associated baseball films.

I don't think anyone will step away from a viewing and have a clear belief of who throws/threw the fasted "heater", but I enjoyed the attempt to put things in perspective. I still feel it was like comparing apples to pears.

What I enjoyed most from the film, were the interviews, especially the deleted ones. I NEVER knew that Bob Gibson, Hank Aaron, and Mike Schmidt were so animated. This is also the most I have ever seen Nolan Ryan talk in a single setting. Whitey Herzog's annoyance, at being asked once too many times about Bob Feller was typical grumpy old man-like, and hysterical.

If you're even a passing fan of the game, even a younger one, you'll appreciate the effort. Glad I bought it.

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