Craig Calcaterra

Blogger at NBC's HardballTalk. Recovering litigator. Rake. Scoundrel. Notorious Man-About-Town.

Watch the trailer for the Bill Lee movie, “Spaceman”


I feel like I’ve been hearing about this movie forever. Maybe it just had a long development. I have no idea. Sometimes that’s a bad omen for a movie, but I feel like a movie about the famous Bill “Spaceman” Lee is immune to bad omens. Or that, on some cosmic level, even if the movie is less-than-great, it’ll still be good for what it is. The trailer for it came out last week. I guess I missed it then, so here it is now.

What it is, from what can be determined from the trailer and some random articles I’ve read about it, is a film that focuses on the end of Lee’s major league career — you can see him toss his Expos jersey away here — and his time doing weird barnstorming things in the 80s and on through today. Less so on his time as a Red Sox pitcher in the 70s, which look like they’ll be handled with flashbacks and archive footage. Probably for the best. This isn’t exactly a huge-budgeted affair and when you half-ass baseball scenes they end up looking terrible. It’s way more likely to do better when it’s going smaller and weirder. Which is probably how Bill Lee likes it.

This doesn’t necessarily look like a “buy tickets in advance” kind of flick, but I’m sure it’s worth a look and will bring some smiles.

A’s starter Sean Manaea to have an MRI on his forearm


Oakland Athletics starter Sean Manaea will undergo an MRI on Tuesday after he left last night’s start against the Rangers with a forearm strain.

The rookie lefty said that his forearm has bothered off and on this season, but that he was able to pitch through them before. He wasn’t able to get loose in the middle of the game yesterday so he exited the contest.

Forearm stiffness is often a bad sign — it’s frequently a compensation injury and/or a precursor to worse news — but here’s hoping Manaea has better luck.

Pete Rose is upset that some people are counting Ichiro’s hits from Japan

Associated Press

In the recaps this morning I mentioned that Ichiro Suzuki is one hit away from catching Pete Rose in career hits. Now, to be fair, he will not be officially recognized as the all-time hit leader by Major League Baseball because 1,278 of his hits came in Japan, with 2,977 coming in the United States. Still, reaching 4,256 career hits — Rose’s number — is pretty impressive all the same.

As Bob Nightengale reports in USA Today, Ichiro matching Rose is a big, big deal in Japan. Reporters are following the chase and Marlins games are being broadcast in Japan as his fans from his home country watch his every swing. Nightengale likewise talks to some major leaguers like Mark Grace who are rightly impressed with Ichiro’s feat, official record or not. As I said in the recaps today, it is impressive, so yeah.

But one guy isn’t impressed. Charlie Hustle:

It sounds like in Japan,’’ Rose told USA TODAY Sports, “they’re trying to make me the Hit Queen. I’m not trying to take anything away from Ichiro, he’s had a Hall of Fame career, but the next thing you know, they’ll be counting his high-school hits.

Rose goes on to say that the caliber of play and players in NPB is not as good as the bigs. Which, overall, is true. Still, you never heard Hank Aaron throwing shade at Sadaharu Oh, did you? Variations in overall level of play aside — and the variations aren’t as big as some think — it’s worth marveling at Ichiro’s career all the same, is it not?

Eh, it’s Pete Rose. He’s not the best person to go to if you’re looking for a perspective that isn’t filtered through “Everything Pete Rose says and does is right” glasses.