I may have a deep aversion to sports — like, no athletic ability what to speak of and a loathing for jock types from my goth days — but I have a soft spot for 1993’s The Sandlot . Maybe because the film accompanied me once during a very boring wait at the doctor’s office, maybe because it makes me nostalgic for a time that I never existed in, who knows. But it’s one of those great summer films from our childhood... even though if you look closely enough, The Sandlot has its share of silly moments.
To rewind, the film is about a group of ragtag misfits who love playing baseball, and how newcomer Scotty Smalls almost ruined his damn life when he got into cahoots with them. He alludes to this about a billion times before it happens, so I’ll just get to the core of the conflict: this kid doesn’t know who Babe Ruth is, and he gets his stepfather’s autographed ball stuck over the face with The Beast. How will the Sandlot kids ever manage to get it back? Will this sour what could’ve been the best summer of their life?
Spoiler Alert: No. But anyway, feel free to scroll down to revisit some of the more strange things in The Sandlot, like the realization that...
1. Oh, Yeah, Denis Leary Is In This
Just throwing aloof stepfather glances all over the place.
2. He Also Has No Real Loyalty To Any Particular Team
Look at those flags. You can't be all about South California and be a Yankees fan, that's not how it works.
3. "I'd Followed Them To The Sandlot Once After School..."
...and walked straight into a bush...
...through a place where cars go to die, apparently.
4. This Very Concerning Child's Toy
Oh, wait guys, all it does is propel marbles all over the place.
How totally normal.
5. This Kid Is So Socially And Athletically Stilted That He Has To Play Catch Like This
He is basically me during gym in my entire elementary school career... and middle school... and high school, let's just be honest.
6. Ham's Bold Pattern-Mixing, Like He's Gwen Stefani Circa 2001
And all the other Sandlot kids are lazing around like boring Basics in their blue jeans.
7. When Everyone Spits "Hello"
I'd really hate to find out how they say good bye.
8. The One Thing Smalls Puts On His Need-To-Know-About Baseball List Is Babe Ruth (Question Mark)
And then he continues to not learn about Babe Ruth for the next several weeks.
9. Ham, Sweet, Elegant Ham, Takes A Bite Out Of This S'mores And Then Hands It To Smalls To Eat
So generous, this one.
10. "I've Swum Here Every Summer Of My Adult Life."
Your adult life? Dude, you're like 9 years old.
11. THIS, THE FACE OF A DERANGED MAD MAN
That is definitely the face of a kid of would go on a suicide mission for a kiss.
12. And Also This Low-Key Assault
OK, maybe that's an exaggeration (maybe), but I'm glad that the film takes a moment to describe how sneaky and underhanded and awful it is... before labeling it cool, omg.
13. "You Play Ball Like A Girl!"
A moment of silence to recognize that this was the ultimate insult crafted to top "you bob for apples in the toilet and like it."
14. OK, But How Exactly Did These Kids Get Their Hands On Chewing Tobacco?
What kind of expertly crafted fake ID were they dolling out, or was this something they just gave away to children in the '60s?
15. Benny Busts The Guts Out Of Their Last Baseball And They Can't Afford A New One Because They Don't Have 98 Cents On Them
It was a simpler time.
16. Where Do These Bones Come From?
Spoiler alert: the dog doesn't end up being a ferocious monster after all. So um, should we be more or less concerned about the fact that this backyard is ridden with bones?
17. Yeah, This Comically Oversized Fake Paw Looks Intimidating
You have to give that dog props for its grabbing abilities, though, especially considering it has no opposable thumbs.
18. "Babe Ruth Signed That Ball. He Was The Greatest Baseball Player Who Ever Lived."
"I'm telling you this information now, halfway through the movie, when it can't help you."
19. The Fact That These Kids Have The Time And Skill To Build Contraptions Like...
...this elaborate vacuum...
...this Peter Pan wire...
...and this whole hot mess on wheels, not to mention the ramp that sends it over to the next yard. And I say again, these kids are like 9 years old.
20. When Babe Ruth's Ghost Comes To Benny And Convinces Him To Confront The Dog...
...initially in black and white for some reason.
Even the child actor is having a rough time playing this part earnestly.
21. "Squints Grew Up And Married Wendy Peffercorn. They Have Nine Kids"
Seriously, this is a classic sports movie, and if you don't check it out, then you're seriously missing out. For the funny faces alone.
Images: 20th Century Fox (26)