Anna Boden & Ryan Fleck
1 EXT. ACADEMY FIELD - DOMINICAN REPUBLIC - DAY
A high angle looking out over a well-manicured baseball field
carved out of a tropical jungle. A game is currently in
A1 ON THE FIELD
Wearing KANSAS CITY KNIGHTS uniforms, mostly Black and dark-
skinned Dominicans as well as several lighter-skinned
Venezuelans (17-22 years old) are set in their positions, poised
for the next pitch.
CLOSE ON the pitcher, MIGUEL SANTOS (aka AZÚCAR/SUGAR - 19,
lean, Black and handsome). Sweat drips down his face in the
oppressive midday heat. He steadies his glove and ball at his
chest, peeking over at the RUNNER on first base. Miguel lifts
his leg high into the air, rears back his right arm, and FIRES
the ball toward the plate.
THUD! A cloud of dust pops off the CATCHER'S mitt as the ball
The BATTER lowers his head, helpless in the face of Miguel's
FROM THE DUGOUT, Miguel's TEAMMATES CHEER him on. HEAD COACH
REYES (dark-skinned, 30s) nods approvingly, CLAPS.
BEHIND THE HOMEPLATE BACKSTOP, a dozen rookie players also in
Kansas City uniforms cheer for their team. Two YOUNG PLAYERS
clocking Miguel's pitches look at each others' radar guns, which
read 92 and 93 MPH.
As the next batter steps up to the plate, Miguel's catcher, JOSE
(18), taps his index finger on his thigh, calling for an outside
The next pitch is popped up on the infield between first and
home. Miguel locates the ball, points to the sky, but Jose and
first baseman, PEDRO BERROA, nearly collide, as the ball lands
between them and the runners reach base safely.
B1 FROM THE OBSERVATION TOWER, the ACADEMY'S DIRECTOR, LEANDRO B1
ALVAREZ (light-skinned, late 50s) and several other COACHES and
SCOUTS jot down notes on their clipboards.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 2.
C1 ON THE FIELD, Miguel glares at Pedro, who averts his eyes, and C1
kicks the dirt.
Miguel looks in for the sign from Jose, nods, and delivers a
tight fastball that sends the batter stumbling backwards to the
Some players LAUGH and heckle the batter. Others point angry
fingers at Miguel, who greets the batter back to the plate with
a friendly, but authoritative, grin.
He sends in the next pitch and the batter swings right through
it, getting nothing but air.
2 INT. ACADEMY DINING ROOM - NIGHT 2
The TEAM (about 35 young men) gather around several tables for
their standard baked chicken and rice lunch. The mood is
friendly and playful as players tease each other across the
tables. Miguel, sitting with his friends MARCOS (2nd base) and
ALFONSO (3rd Base), works on a second helping of dessert.
Check out Sugar... Puts on twenty
pounds in two months; now he's going
for twenty more.
(mouth full of food)
All muscle, baby. Rock solid.
For some NEW PLAYERS, distinguishable in the sea of BLUE
uniforms by their BLACK "tryout" jerseys and ragged sneakers, it
is their first healthy meal, and they eat as if it were their
last. One of them, SALVADOR (Black, scrawny, 17) holds his
plate up to his mouth, shovelling food down his throat.
Slow down, kid, it ain't going nowhere.
A few of the guys LAUGH.
If you hustled half as much as him,
maybe you'd be hungry too.
The other guys "ohhhh" Miguel's insult, as Salvador and Miguel
exchange subtle grins.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 3.
3 INT. ACADEMY CLASSROOM - SAME DAY 3
Kids crowd around in a circle, repeating after the animated
English instructor, SEÑOR SANCHEZ, who goes over some English
BASEBALL TERMS in the center. As he repeats the terms, he
enthusiastically pantomimes the meanings of each.
CLOSE ON Miguel, repeating the strange words.
4 INT. RECREATION ROOM - SAME NIGHT 4
It's dark, and most of the team sits around an old TV set
watching the climactic final scene of Field of Dreams dubbed in
Spanish. Kevin Costner asks his father to play catch in a voice
that sounds nothing like Kevin Costner.
Miguel passes through the room, and we follow him out of the rec
room down a hall, and into...
5 THE WEIGHT ROOM 5
...where he sits down at the bench press, lowers his head in
thought. TRACK IN CLOSE as he crosses himself, mouths a prayer,
then leans back onto the bench.
TRACK OUT as he lifts the bar, and begins a set of presses.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 4.
6 EXT. ACADEMY FIELD - DAY 6
The Kansas City Director of Minor League Operations, RUDY
HUBBARD (white, 40s), watches a TRYOUT SESSION, where TWO SKINNY
TEENS in worn street clothes pitch to uniformed catchers. Their
AGENT talks on a cell phone nearby.
Alvarez, the academy director, approaches one of the kids,
whispers in his ear. The kid smiles tentatively.
Alvarez joins Rudy and they speak in English.
What'd you tell him?
I told him to grip the ball more
gently. Like a tit.
They both crack up.
FROM THE TRYOUT MOUND. The kid looks over to the two men pow-
wowing about him. He breathes in, nervous...
7 BATTING CAGE - MINUTES LATER 7
Pedro, sweating hard, takes a few cuts, but only seems to be
hitting weak ground balls and foul tips.
Pedro Berroa. Third year. Hasn't
developed like we hoped.
How much he sign for?
Jesus. These kids keep getting more
expensive. How much did you sign for
back in the day?
3000. When I was fifteen.
Rudy smiles and moves on. Alvarez follows. Pedro watches the
men as they walk away.
8 BULL PEN MOUNDS - MINUTES LATER 8
Alvarez and Rudy approach a PITCHING COACH instructing Salvador.
Miguel warms up next to him.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 5.
Salvador Torres. Been practicing with
the team for almost a week. Still raw,
but he's got a lot of potential.
We gonna sign him?
Soon. Soon. We want to play it low-
key, see what his agent says.
How much you think?
They've gotten two offers from other
clubs. Agent says they were around a
Rudy raises his eyebrows.
Rudy looks over to Miguel.
What about him?
Miguel Santos. Great arm. We signed
him two years ago for fifteen.
Miguel fires in a pitch. Rudy nods, impressed.
Good deal. He throw any junk?
Miguel looks over, sees the American with Alvarez.
Show us your curve.
Miguel nods, nervous, focuses. He pitches. The ball curves
very subtly over the plate for a strike.
Not bad. Mind if I try something?
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 6.
Miguel looks back to the men.
Hey, kid, do you mind? May I?
Miguel stares blankly at Rudy, not understanding.
Give him the ball.
Miguel hands Rudy the ball, and Rudy demonstrates how to handle
a knuckle curve ball, which looks strangely unorthodox, with the
index finger tucked against the baseball.
Spike curve. Gives you more rotation,
(hands Miguel the ball)
Miguel struggles to emulate Rudy's grip, so Rudy maneuvers his
fingers into the correct position. Alvarez laughs.
Vamos! Let's go! Pitch it!
Miguel looks over to his catcher, Jose. Winds up the next
pitch, and soars it 5 feet wide of the mark.
Rudy and Alvarez laugh. Miguel looks back over his shoulder.
It's okay, son, these things take time.
You'll figure it out.
Rudy pats Miguel on the back and walks off with Alvarez. Miguel
stares at them hard as they go. He turns back to his catcher,
determined, squeezes the ball in spike curve formation.
Misses badly again. JUMP CUTS take us through a half-dozen more
bad curve attempts, as other players take notice and gather
around, some laughing, until...
...finally a perfect curve twists dramatically through the air,
landing centered in Jose's mitt.
The other players erupt in amazement, while Miguel stares
straight ahead. After a beat, he smiles wide.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 7.
9 INT. ACADEMY CLASSROOM - DAY 9
Sr. Sanchez stands in front of a chalkboard, reading off lines
of a scripted ENGLISH DIALOGUE for the class to repeat. The
class' version of the words are jumbled and incomprehensible.
I want to talk to you.
I want talk to you.
Your performance in the mound is not as
good as last year. What is the
Your performance in the mound is not
good as last year. What is problem?
I don't know. Maybe my mechanic.
I don't know. Maybe mechanic.
I want to give you a chance. It is up
CLOSE ON Miguel focused on the baseball in his hand. He
practices his knuckle curve grip, not participating in the
I want to give you a chance. Is up to
10 EXT. BASEBALL ACADEMY - MORNING 10
Miguel walks down a dirt road with his duffel bag. He exits
past the gate, waving goodbye to the SECURITY GUARD.
A10 Beyond the manicured lawns and landscaped gardens of the A10
Academy, Miguel passes through the overgrown, undeveloped land
where neighborhood CHILDREN play among grazing goats. He
continues down the dirt road towards a paved highway in the
distance, as bachata music fuels the sound track, and carries
over the following...
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 8.
11 INT. MOVING BUS - DAY 11
Thick stalks of sugarcane race through the frame. CLOSE ON
Miguel staring out the bus window. On his way home, he
A11 --half-clothed children flying a homemade kite. A11
B11 --a truck of bananas barrelling by with a boy perched on top. B11
C11 --an old man sitting by the street, looking straight at Miguel. C11
D11 --flaming sugarcane alongside the road. D11
E11 --three children wedged between their parents on a motorbike. E11
F11 --the tall, wheezing smokestack of the Cristobal Colon sugar F11
12 EXT. STREET - SAN PEDRO DE MACORIS - DAY 12
Miguel hops off the bus with his duffel, climbs the pedestrian
walkway passing over dozens of rusty railroad cars used for
transporting sugarcane to the refinery. We PAN Miguel across
the bridge, revealing burning smokestacks in the distance.
13 EXT. SIDE STREET - MINUTES LATER 13
Modest homes line the neighborhood, fashioned from corrugated
tin, painted in bold colors, no two houses alike. A skinny pig
roams a barren lot. A group of WOMEN with their hair in curlers
sit on crates around a dominoes table. They wave their hellos
to Miguel, who smiles back.
Local KIDS play stickball in a trash-strewn clearing with
makeshift mitts fashioned from old milk cartons or cardboard.
They see Miguel and rush toward him as he paces up the block,
SHOUTING his name.
As Miguel approaches home, he makes eye contact with a girl,
ERICA (15), buying water from a delivery truck. She smiles.
With the kids still clamoring around Miguel, he stops, unzips
his duffel and hands out some used baseballs. The kids grab the
balls, then run off to play.
Miguel approaches Erica. She puts down her water bucket, gives
Miguel a hug.
How are you, sis?
Any news about the States?
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 9.
Is that all you have to say?
Miguel helps Erica with the water bucket and walks with her
towards their home - a small wooden construction with peeling
paint and a rusted aluminum roof. On the lot next to their
house, the cinder-block frame of their future home dwarfs the
others on the block.
14 INT. MIGUEL'S HOME - NIGHT 14
Miguel and Erica enter the house, where their brother LUIS (7)
watches an enormous television, which feels incongruous in the
middle of the tiny, dilapidated home. The reception is still
Miguel's grandmother, ABUELA, sits upright on her mattress in
the corner of the room.
Hello, Abuela. You're looking
She smiles big at her oldest grandson, opens her arms for a hug.
Erica sits at the kitchen table, where her schoolbooks lay open.
What's up my people? How's the TV?
Erica won't let me watch baseball.
Not during American Idol, anyway.
Miguel's mother, CARMEN (late 30s) emerges from behind a hanging
bed sheet, which acts as a "wall" separating two rooms.
Buenas, Miguelito! Do you have any
good news for your mother?
As a matter of fact, yes.
You're going to the United States?!
Not yet, ma... But I learned how to
throw a knuckle curve.
A knuckle curve? What's that?
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 10.
A GROUP of KIDS gather at the window.
Sugar, come out and play!
15 EXT. STREET - NIGHT 15
Gathered under the only functioning street lamp, Miguel rears
back and throws in a swooping curve, that causes the BATTER to
flinch out of the way, as it breaks perfectly over the plate.
Carmen, Luis and the rest of the barrio ONLOOKERS, "oooohh", the
Miguel notices a group of GIRLS eyeing him from across the
street. His eyes stop on one, SOFIA (17). They exchange grins.
16 INT. MIGUEL'S HOME - NIGHT 16
Miguel's family - minus Miguel - watches a soap opera. Carmen
and Erica are in dialogue with the TV.
The CAMERA PANS away from the family, out the back window, where
the new home is being constructed. We ZOOM IN on the structure
covered in plastic tarp.
17 INT. CONSTRUCTION LOT 17
Amidst tools, dry cement, a half-finished wooden dining table,
and other assorted construction materials, Miguel has sex with
Sofia on a work table.
18 INT. CONSTRUCTION LOT - LATER 18
Miguel throws on his t-shirt. Sofia looks at the wooden dining
table. It's artfully done, with details etched into the legs.
When will you finish this?
Soon. It's just hard to find the time.
I'm trying to match the chairs my dad
made, but I can't get it right.
Well, I think it's perfect.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 11.
I'll make you another when I'm done.
Sofia smiles, kisses Miguel on the cheek.
And the rest of the house? How long
till it's done?
Um, another month, maybe two... You
know we just did it where Abuela's room
is going to be...
Don't tell me that!
Why not? We can do it in mom's kitchen
next. Right over there.
I hope you make it to the States this
You hope? C'mon, there's nobody
Okay, how about: I KNOW you'll make
Now you're talkin'. And when I do,
I'll buy a Cadillac, drive it through
the ocean, and bring you back with me.
You can't drive a Cadillac on water.
Yes! In the States they make cars that
drive on water.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 12.
You'll see who's crazy. Just watch.
I want to see the snow. Does it snow
in Kansas City?
I don't know. But I'll take you to New
York City. Yankee Stadium. It snows
there. You wanta see me play in Yankee
It doesn't snow during baseball season,
So we'll go for Christmas.
Next Christmas, we'll sail into Yankee
Stadium in my Cadillac car-boat. Deal?
You are crazy!
19 EXT. MALECÓN - NIGHT 19
Miguel, Sofia, JAVIER (Black, 22) JAMIE (Black, 26) and
ALEXANDRA (one of Sofia's friends) hang out by the malecón
(waterside), drinking rum and dancing to merengue that blasts
out the open doors of a nearby car. The mood is festive.
I liked her, but she asked me to cut my
hair. I thought about it. She was
cute, but... I liked my hair more.
I liked it too, Javi.
Then why'd you cut it last week?
I thought it was time for a new look.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 13.
Or a new girl.
Sofia punches Miguel in the arm.
Watch it, baby, that's a million-dollar
arm you're messing with.
He's right! All hail the golden arm.
Javier and the girls drunkenly salute Miguel's arm, pretend to
dust dirt away, but Jaime doesn't play along. He looks on, a
You call that flabby rubberband an arm?
This flabby rubberband can throw 95.
What can yours do?
I threw 98 in double-A Portland.
98? Then why you washing windshields
now? I saw you try and bumrush Javy at
the stoplight last week.
Everyone cracks up laughing, including Jaime, as Miguel grabs
Sofia, and leads her in a dance.
His smile fading, Jaime looks out over the water. Miguel
notices this. Hold.
EXT. SAN PEDRO TOWN - MORNING
Various Sunday morning images establishing Miguel's hometown:
--A dewey mist covers an empty baseball field, surrounded by
acres of tall sugarcane.
--Women hang laundry on the line to dry.
--A rooster walks alone through a graveyard.
--People spill out of church into the road.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 14.
--MIDDLE-AGED MEN drink beer in the dugout during a softball
21 EXT. EMPTY LOT FIELD - DAY 21
A makeshift diamond is overrun with weeds, ditches, stones, and
trash for bases. Donkeys graze in the outfield, unphased by the
LITTLE KIDS (10-14 years old) playing around them.
A YOUNG PITCHER fires in a fastball that BEANS the YOUNG HITTER
in the back.
IN THE BLEACHERS, TWO MIDDLE-AGED MEN drink beer and
occasionally heckle the kids.
You're supposed to aim for the head!
Nearby, Miguel sits beside his old coach, FRANK (early 40s),
watching the kids play. One of the local SHOE SHINE BOYS cleans
Miguel's shoes with an old toothbrush as Frank cracks open a
beer. Frank points out one of the kids on the field.
I like this one. Good bat speed. Only
twelve years old, out here four, five
hours everyday. His mom tells me he's
missing school. I say, yeah, but...
have you seen his swing?
I'm showing his older brother to the
Yankees on Monday.
Miguel nods, a hint of disappointment in his eyes.
They don't know what they missed with
you. It's cool though. They'll be
knocking on your door, offering
millions when you turn into a
superstar. You'll see...
Miguel nods, appreciating the vote of confidence.
Have you been to New York?
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 15.
Nothing like playing for a crowd of New
Yorkers. They're even louder than
What's the city like?
It's great. But you need to get to
Kansas City before you start thinking
about New York. Know what I mean?
You hear anything about spring training
Frank sips his beer.
Frank shrugs, as Miguel's sister calls out from the street--
Miguel, Luis! Dinner is ready!
You'd tell me if you knew.
Miguel shakes his head, gets up.
Wanna join us for dinner?
Not tonight. But give your mom a kiss
for me, okay?
Miguel gives a coin to the boy who's been cleaning his shoes
before heading off with his little brother.
Frank sips his beer, calls out to the field--
C'mon, Nelson! Fire it in, baby!
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 16.
22 EXT. ACADEMY FIELD - EARLY MORNING 22
A mist hovers over the empty field.
23 EXT. ACADEMY ENTRANCE ROAD - SAME TIME 23
A group of Academy EMPLOYEES shuffle down the dirt road on foot.
24 INT. ACADEMY DORMITORY - SAME TIME 24
Miguel, laying awake in the upper bed, hears his bunk-mate,
Alfonso, stirring beneath him. Miguel peers over, sees Alfonso
discreetly pop several pills from a plastic baggy. They make
brief eye contact before Alfonso heads out of the room.
25 INT. ACADEMY KITCHEN - DAY 25
Several middle-aged women sit on buckets near an open door,
peeling yucca. A man fries eggs at the grill, preparing
breakfast for the players.
26 INT. ACADEMY DINING ROOM - DAY 26
The players eat breakfast. The mood is strangely quiet.
27 INT. ACADEMY CLUBHOUSE - DAY 27
The signed players sit around in uniform, while the unsigned
"trial" players wear their black jerseys. Coach Reyes addresses
them in mid-speech.
A lot of you are thinking about your
families right now. Your girlfriends,
sisters and brothers, grandparents.
You're feeling the pressure. But, I'm
going to tell you something very
important, gentlemen... forget it.
You've got to think about yourselves.
Put all your energy into your game,
into your development as a player.
Forget about everything else in your
life... and just play ball. You wanna
succeed, you gotta be like a racehorse,
focused on your goal. It's up to you.
28 EXT. ACADEMY BUILDING - DAY 28
Several players work out on bars attached to the side of the
As Miguel lowers himself after a set of pull-ups, he notices a
shiny, black, luxury SUV drive into the academy parking lot.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 17.
Miguel watches as Alvarez gets out of the driver's seat, doing
business on his cell phone.
29 EXT. ACADEMY FIELD - LATER 29
Miguel exercises his pitching arm by stretching an elastic tube
tied against a chain-link fence. As he stretches, he watches a
group of players line up for a sprint drill, sizing up his
Salvador, wearing his black jersey, races for his life, beating
all the others.
30 EXT. ACADEMY FIELD - LATER 30
The sweat-drenched players line up according to their positions,
waiting their turns to participate in a double-play drill, where
the pitchers cover first base.
Miguel awaits his turn, watching another pitcher, EDDY, run to
first to receive a throw from second base, but before Eddy can
catch the ball...
...he twists his ankle tripping over the bag.
The coaches rush over to Eddy, who is on the ground wincing in
pain. Miguel and the rest of the team watch in nervous
anticipation as Eddy struggles to his feet, limps off the field
with the aid of another player.
Next up, Miguel! Here we go!
The ball is hit on the ground to first base, where the fielder
quickly throws it over to second. Miguel charges over to first,
stutter steps as he nears the base, and receives the throw just
in time to beat the hitter and step out of the way. He exhales
31 INT. CLUBHOUSE SHOWERS - DAY 31
The players shower after a gruelling day of workouts.
32 INT. CLUBHOUSE - DAY 32
Miguel lounges with an elaborate ice-wrap around his shoulder
and upper arm as other players get dressed into street clothes.
Coach Reyes comes in, spots Pedro.
Berroa, see Alvarez when you're
Pedro nods. Miguel and Marcos exchange knowing glances.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 18.
33 INT. ACADEMY DINING ROOM - NIGHT 33
The team eats dinner. At Miguel's table, we catch the punchline
of a joke...
So the Dominican's like, `Fuck, what am
I gonna do?' He stays there, points up
to the sky and says. `Look! There's a
plane... Right THERE!'
Everyone laughs hysterically, as...
...the young rookie, Salvador, grabs a seat next to Miguel at an
Hey, Sugar! They made me an offer.
Miguel smiles, but hesitates for a beat as Pedro walks past them
and over to an empty table in the corner of the room. Miguel
turns back to Salvador, pats him on the head.
Good for you. Congratulations. How
much they offer you?
(with a big smile)
(sensing the other players
But, you know, my manager's taking,
like, forty of it... What'd you sign
Oh, you know, more or less the same.
Did you get any other offers?
Yankees and Seattle, but not as much.
Just don't get cocky. No one likes a
dickhead... Welcome to the team.
So, why do they call you Sugar?
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 19.
Well it's like this... it started cause
I'm sweet with the ladies. But mostly
it's cause I got the sweetest knuckle
curve in the whole Republic.
Bullshit! You just learned that shit
on Friday! It's cause he eats so much
Salvador notices two pieces of cake on Miguel's tray.
(playing it cool)
He's just jealous.
Miguel notices Pedro across the room, staring at his food.
34 INT. ACADEMY RECREATION ROOM - NIGHT 34
A dozen players sit around the television, watching a shlocky
American horror film on DVD.
35 IN THE ADJOINING DORMITORY 35
Pedro packs his belongings into a KC Knights' duffel bag, when
Miguel, Marcos, and Alfonso approach his bunk.
We got you a going away present.
Miguel unzips his windbreaker to reveal a bottle of Brugal rum
hidden underneath. The other guys smile mischievously.
36 EXT. ACADEMY BUILDING - NIGHT 36
Miguel, Marcos, Alfonso, and Pedro tip-toe across the gravel,
whispering at each other to shut up.
37 EXT. OBSERVATION TOWER - LATER 37
The four players toast their rum in little plastic cups. The
bottle is nearly finished.
You should try Los Campos. I heard the
Dodgers could use a new first baseman.
Fuck that. The coaches are even
tougher over there. I'm done, man.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 20.
No more curfews, nobody tellin' me what
to do and how to do it. For real, I'm
glad this shit's over. I'm a free man.
Awkward silence. The players look at Pedro with pity, unsure
how to respond. After a beat, Miguel mocks coach Reyes and the
others follow suit, mocking Alvarez and the other coaches.
(snatching Pedro's cap)
No caps indoors, son!
Cut the meat with your knife; eat the
meat with your fork. NEVER eat the
meat with your knife.
Or you'll chop off your tongue.
Ten p.m. lights out!
(in broken English)
"Tay me outta the ball game, tay me
outta the crowd..."
The other players laugh, join Pedro in a loud whisper...
"...buys me so peanut and crackay-
yacks. I doe-care if I never get back.
Roo, roo, roo for home teams, we doe-
win is a shame..."
Pedro breaks off from the song, looks out over the field, on the
verge of crying. One by one, the other players take notice and
stop singing. Silence. Hold.
38 INT. ACADEMY BATHROOM - DAY 38
Hungover, Miguel vomits in the toilet. Reyes opens the stall.
Santos, what the hell's wrong with you?
I think I have the flu, coach. I can't
Reyes glances over to Marcos and Alfonso standing nearby. They
lower their heads in embarrassment like two kids busted by dad.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 21.
You've got five minutes to get out on
that mound, Santos.
Reyes marches off.
39 EXT. ACADEMY FIELD - DAY 39
Miguel on the mound. Takes a deep breath. He utilizes every
ounce of strength to deliver a pitch, and...
CRACK! The visiting Detroit Academy HITTER knocks the ball over
the left field wall for a homerun, wherein...
BLAH! Miguel throws up on the mound. All the players gasp in
disgust, but Reyes just laughs.
Miguel looks over to Alvarez, sitting under an umbrella with a
clipboard, then to Reyes, hoping he'll yank him out of the game,
but Reyes just claps.
Feel better now? Let's go!
Miguel tries to shake off the cobwebs, steps on the rubber,
stares down the next hitter.
CLOSE on his hand revealing the knuckle curve grip. He tosses
in the next pitch, which arcs into Jose's glove for a...
Reyes' smile fades, stunned by the beautiful curve.
A SERIES OF JUMPCUTS take us through the next three batters, as
Miguel makes quick work of them, mixing up his nasty curve with
a blazing fastball.
After the third out, Miguel walks back to the dugout. He takes
a seat on the bench, smiles smugly.
Wipe that smile off your face.
And he does.
40 EXT. ACADEMY FIELD - SUNSET 40
Miguel, Alfonso, and Marcos run laps around the field as
punishment for the previous night's activities. They look as if
they could pass out at any moment.
FADE TO BLACK.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 22.
41 INT. WAITING ROOM - DAY 41
Miguel and Marcos sit on a couch in a bare-walled waiting room
outside Alvarez's office. They sit quietly, like two kids
waiting for the principal.
Coach Reyes pokes his head out of Alvarez's office, motions them
42 INT. ALVAREZ'S OFFICE - MOMENTS LATER 42
Miguel and Marcos stare straight ahead, nervously. Alvarez
stares at them, icy cold. After a beat...
I am very disappointed. Just when I
was starting to like you guys, you go
and do something stupid. What do you
have to say for yourselves?
But Alfonso was there too--
--No excuses. This is unacceptable
behavior. You guys need to learn
Miguel and Marcos lower their heads.
You need to remember that you still
have a long way to go, a lot of hard
work ahead of you before you make it.
First, there's getting your shot in the
American Minor Leagues: rookie ball,
single, double, triple A - all that
before you even set foot in a major
league ballpark. So, you better pull
it together quick...
Because nobody's gonna take this shit
from a couple Dominican rookies when
you go to the U.S. for Spring Training
They glance up, eyes wide. Did he just say...
You've been invited to Spring Training.
Everyone smiles (even Alvarez).
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 23.
43 INT. TEXTILE FACTORY - DAY 43
CAMERA follows behind the FLOOR MANAGER, as he passes rows of
WOMEN of all ages, working on sewing machines for an American
underwear company. He stops behind one woman, taps her on the
shoulder. The woman removes her earphones, turns around. It is
Miguel's mother, Carmen.
Phone call. He said it's important.
44 INT. FACTORY HALLWAY 44
Carmen picks up the phone.
Hold on her reaction shifting from that of concern to elation.
She struggles to contain her joy.
45 INT. MIGUEL'S HOME - NIGHT 45
Miguel opens a new bottle of rum, pours shots for everyone. The
whole family and all of Miguel's neighbors are jammed inside the
tiny house and spilling out into the street. Merengue blasts
from the new home stereo system.
FRIENDS and FAMILY pat Miguel on the back. He smiles, basking
in the glory of success. Erica kisses Miguel on the cheek.
Don't forget to call everyday. I want
to know everything!
You know what I mean, dummy.
Of course I'll be calling to keep you
in check, make sure your grades don't
Look who's talking.
Carmen interrupts, drapes her arms around Miguel, kissing him
repeatedly. As Erica looks on, we get the sense that she's used
to being on the outside of this kind of attention.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 24.
You are my hero!
Carmen pulls Miguel close, takes something from her pocket, puts
it in his hand.
It was your father's. I want you to
take it with you...
Miguel looks at the cross, kisses his mother on the cheek. As
he looks up, he notices Erica slip away.
You've been given a wonderful gift,
Miguelito. And God willing, you will
continue to do great things with it. I
love you so much.
She kisses him on the forehead.
A SERIES OF JUMPCUTS present a variety of family and friends
introducing themselves to Miguel.
Miguelito! You gonna remember your
uncle Angel when you're all big and
famous? Don't forget your family, kid.
Never forget where you came from.
JUMP CUT TO:
Lupe! Cousin Lupe! Remember that time
we went skinny-dipping at the Malecón?
JUMP CUT TO:
You were eight years old! Hated the
goats so much. You would cry and cry
and cry and cry. What a baby you were.
Do you remember?
JUMP CUT TO:
What's your name?
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 25.
Lola! Your aunt Lola!
JUMP CUT TO:
JUMP CUT TO:
Your neighbor Ana. I grew up around
the corner from here.
Ana lays a juicy kiss on Miguel. He smiles.
JUMP CUT TO:
Don't give me any shit, kid. I taught
you everything you know.
Miguel gives Frank a big hug.
I'm damn proud of you, kid. Your
father would be, too.
Thanks. I owe it all to you.
Not all. Just forty percent.
Miguel smiles, as Frank leans close.
I spent the best years of my life
playing in the States. Life gives you
a lot of opportunities, but baseball
only gives you one. Enjoy every minute
How's your new curve?
It's pretty sweet.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 26.
Frank hands Miguel a pen.
What's this for?
Miguel seems puzzled, but searches for something to write on.
I'm kidding, you arrogant prick. It's
so you can write your family... and me,
too... if you feel like it.
Miguel gives Frank another hug.
46 INT. MIGUEL'S HOME - LATER 46
Miguel dances salsa with Sofia, and then switches partners,
dances with Carmen.
As he dances close with his mother, he catches a glimpse of
Erica standing with some friends off to the side.
47 EXT. CONSTRUCTION LOT - LATER THAT NIGHT 47
Miguel and Erica stand in silhouette, isolated from the party
raging outside. Miguel sands one of the legs of the dining
Where's your boyfriend?
I don't know; the ugly one.
Okay, where's Hector?
Some other party.
So what about the good-looking one?
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 27.
Mmm, Fernando... I think he's out there
dancing with Sofia.
Miguel's eyes get big for a second, until Erica smiles. He's
been had. He smiles back. A beat.
I'm proud of you, sis. You're going to
do great things too. We all know it.
I'm gonna miss you...
She kisses Miguel on the cheek.
C'mon, let's dance.
Go on, I'll be out in a minute. And
tell Fernando to keep his dirty hands
off my girl.
Through cracks in the tarp, Miguel watches Erica join the dance
party in the street.
Savoring this rare moment alone, he breathes deep, blows wood
dust off the table leg, and continues sanding. Hold.
FADE TO BLACK.
48 INT. AIRPLANE - DAY 48
Miguel looks out the window over the dry, Arizona desert.
49 INT. AIRPORT BAGGAGE CLAIM - DAY 49
A duffel bag emerges from the luggage shoot, and slides down to
the rotating conveyor belt, where an AMERICAN TOURIST grabs it
and exits frame. PAN OVER to Miguel, Marcos and several other
DOMINICAN PLAYERS (including ANTONIO and JULIO) excitedly
waiting for their bags. Miguel perks up upon seeing his,
quickly snatches it off the belt. The others smile and APPLAUD.
50 EXT/INT. AIRPORT SHUTTLE BUS - LATE AFTERNOON 50
The other Dominican players goof off, while Miguel stares out
the windows at the rocky suburban Phoenix landscape. He catches
wide-eyed glimpses of wacky shaped cacti, strip malls, and, of
course, a drive-thru Starbucks.
ON THE RADIO, a conservative talk show host warns listeners
about the evils of Iran, suggests war as the only solution.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 28.
51 INT. HOTEL LOBBY - NIGHT 51
The players enter the southwest-style lobby, examining potted
cacti, and framed R.C. Gorman reprints on the walls.
52 INT. HOTEL ROOM 52
Miguel and Marcos enter the room, drop their bags and explore
everything like big kids away from home for the first time.
Marcos turns on the TV, which has a clear reception. He smiles.
IN THE BATHROOM Miguel examines the hair dryer on the wall,
turns it on and off.
KNOCK KNOCK KNOCK. Miguel opens the adjoining suite door to
find Antonio and Julio. They push past him, each holding a
Check this out.
Antonio opens their mini bar, tosses Miguel and Marcos beers.
They all toast...
Marcos randomly hits buttons on the remote control and
accidentally selects an adult pay-per-view movie. The opening
credits plunge right into a graphic sex-scene. Their heads
immediately jerk over to the TV, stunned.
They all smile and toast again.
KNOCK KNOCK KNOCK
Marcos opens the door to find JORGE RAMIREZ (25, an experienced
minor leaguer who left the KC Knights Dominican camp three years
ago) smiling before him.
What's up fellas!?
They hug. Jorge enters, notices the beers and porn. He shakes
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 29.
53 EXT. ALL NIGHT DINER - NIGHT 53
Through the window we see the players sitting in a corner booth.
A semi truck BLASTS through the frame.
54 INT. ALL NIGHT DINER 54
Over beers, the players study their menus in confusion, as Jorge
does his best to explain how things work.
Never, never, never, drink from the
hotel mini bar. That shit is
expensive. You want beer, buy it at
the store. You wanta see titties?
They got magazines for that. Don't pay
in the hotel.
A WAITRESS approaches.
You boys ready?
The greatest thing about the States?
You can order breakfast 24/7. French
toast is the best. It's nothing like
(in English to waitress)
French toast please.
The players stare at Jorge, a little intimidated.
After a beat, the players respond in unison...
The waitress nods and leaves, wherein the players crack up
laughing at their first English language dining experience.
55 EXT. SPRING TRAINING FIELD - DAY 55
FROM THE OBSERVATION TOWER, we look down over the multiple-field
spring training complex, where the MINOR LEAGUERS work out. The
vast facilities are triple the size of what we saw in the
A55 ON THE FIELD, Miguel, Marcos, and Jorge stretch out on the A55
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 30.
Jorge, wearing an elastic knee brace, points out a young,
AFRICAN-AMERICAN GUY running wind sprints across the field...
Brad Johnson. He just signed for a
million dollars out of college.
Miguel and Marcos watch Brad with fascination, searching for
some sort of physical representation of his wealth.
There's a lot of guys like that. But
you can't let that intimidate you.
Everyone knows Dominicans rule the
Two Venezuelan players, ORLANDO MATO (23, catcher) and ED POVEDA
(22, center field) step up.
What's this about Dominicans ruling the
No, he must've said Venezuelans.
Jorge stands up, exchanges hugs with Orlando and Ed as they
continue their debate over which Latin country has the best
Sammy, Manny, Pedro...
Santana, Zambrano, the Guillens!
Are you guys all from the same family?
Look who's talking... Are these your
What, all Dominicans look the same,
They all smile, stop razzing each other momentarily to meet the
This is Miguel and Marcos. Up from
(to Miguel and Marcos)
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 31.
Orlando and Ed. We all played in
Bridgetown together before I moved up
to Double A and left these fools
But you couldn't hang in Wichita.
I injured my knee, asshole. But I'm
healthy now. You'll see.
Fifty bucks you're back in Iowa next
Fifty bucks you're still an asshole
They all LAUGH.
56 ON THE FIELD - LATER 56
Pitching coach, STU SUTTON (white, 40s), addresses the minor
league pitching staff in mid-speech.
You've gotta show us your best game
here. Remember that, until you reach
the top, there's always guys above you,
hustling to keep you here. And guys
below you pushing to take your job. We
have 75 pitchers in this camp competing
for less than 50 positions come April
3rd. So you gotta work hard...
While all the players respectfully listen to Stu, it is clear
that very few of the Latino players can understand him.
57 LATER ON THE PRACTICE MOUNDS 57
Miguel stretches his arm, while observing another group of
PITCHERS throwing in the bullpen. He stares at them with
intensity, sizing up his new competition.
58 LATER ON THE FIELD 58
Miguel faces off against a HITTER in a simulated game scenario.
One, two, three, he strikes him out on three straight pitches.
Stu and another COACH exchange impressed looks.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 32.
Bring over Leonard.
The other Coach calls over to the adjoining field.
Bring over Leonard!
59 ON THE FIELD - MINUTES LATER 59
ON major league all-star ROB LEONARD in the batter's box,
awaiting Miguel's pitch.
Miguel takes a deep breath, psyches himself up. He puts
everything he has into a hearty fastball, which...
...sails right over the plate for a STRIKE, as Leonard calmly
watches and readies himself for the next one.
Feeling confident with his stuff, Miguel fires in the next
WHACK! Leonard sails it over the right field wall.
Stu Sutton smiles at Miguel.
Welcome to America, kid.
60 INT. ALL NIGHT DINER - NIGHT 60
CLOSE ON a plate of french toast. Miguel, Marcos, Antonio, and
Julio all chow down on french toast again. They eat in silence
for a few beats, until...
I have to admit... I'm getting a little
sick of the french toast.
The others nod in agreement, but continue eating.
61 INT. HOTEL LOBBY - PAY PHONE - NIGHT 61
Miguel talks on the phone to Sofia.
I pitched against Rob Leonard today.
A61 We INTERCUT with Sofia, at her home in the Dominican Republic. A61
No shit! You strike him out?
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 33.
You don't believe me?
Well, I got one strike at least.
So, do you like it there?
Mmmm... It's different.
I don't know. Just different. Like
the food is really sweet.
I thought you liked sweet things.
All the players are really good.
But not like you.
No, not like me. Of course not... But
they're pretty good.
Another beat. Sofia looks down at her bare feet, scrunches her
I miss you.
I miss you, too.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 34.
62 INT. HOTEL ROOM - NIGHT 62
Marcos tries to sleep, while Miguel channel surfs through the
late night infomercials and reality TV dating shows.
After a few beats of this...
Turn it off.
And he does.
63 EXT. SPRING TRAINING FIELD - SUNRISE 63
Miguel runs laps along the outfield wall in the empty stadium.
64 EXT. SPRING TRAINING FIELD - GAME DAY 64
The Kansas City B-squad is facing off against the Los Angeles B-
squad, which is rallying in the top of the 9th.
65 IN THE BULLPEN 65
Miguel warms up, glancing over to the action on the field
between pitches. He sees...
...Los Angeles gets another hit, scoring another run, so...
...Stu Sutton walks out to the mound, signals for Miguel.
Miguel throws one more warm-up toss and sprints onto the field.
66 ON THE MOUND 66
Miguel arrives, ready for action. Stu hands him the ball, while
the catcher, Orlando, translates.
Just relax. Know your pitches. And
take it easy. Ground ball. Okay?
Just relax. Ground ball.
Miguel nods. As he tosses a few more warm-up pitches from the
mound, Stu goes back to the DUGOUT where Marcos and Julio
anxiously await Miguel's spring training game debut.
The BATTER steps in and Miguel steps on the rubber, touches his
father's cross around his neck, tucks it in his jersey. He
looks to Orlando, and nods at his request for a fastball. He
throws it in...
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 35.
Stu exchanges impressed glances with another COACH.
Miguel sends in the next one, and...
...the HITTER checks his swing, but goes too far.
IN THE DUGOUT Marcos gets to his feet, clapping for
Miguel nods to Orlando, delivers again...
CRACK! The ball is smoked toward Brad Johnson at second base.
He leaps out, body fully extended, and makes a fantastic catch.
But he's not done yet...
The runner at second is too far off the bag, so Brad hops to his
feet, and fires a laser beam to second, finishing off one of the
sweetest double-plays you'll ever see.
Miguel pumps his fist into the air, and the team runs to...
67 THE DUGOUT 67
Marcos and Julio are the first to greet Miguel with high-fives.
Orlando, Ed, and Jorge, coming off the field, follow in suit.
Miguel awaits Brad's return to the dugout and high-fives him
too, but they soon return to their segregated places on opposite
ends of the bench.
68 INT. CLUBHOUSE - DAY 68
Most of the players are gone or heading out when Miguel
approaches his catcher, Orlando, a few lockers away.
Where did you learn English so good?
Back home in Caracas.
Like in high school, or something?
Yeah, but it's still hard though.
People talk fast.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 36.
Miguel agrees, as an ASSISTANT COACH finishes handing out checks
to the remaining players.
Miguel sits on the bench near his locker, opens his envelope to
INSERT: a check for $502.18.
69 INT. CLASSROOM - LATE AFTERNOON 69
The ENGLISH INSTRUCTOR goes over baseball related vocabulary off-
screen, while Miguel glances through his "English for Baseball
He finds a page with pictures of different foods along with
their English names. He looks at all the foods, stops at an
image of a fried egg. He circles the word "egg."
The instructor finishes up class, and the exhausted Latino
players get up to leave. Marcos stands, leans over to Miguel.
C'mon. Let's grab some dinner.
Nah, I'm gonna stay and work out a
little. I'll catch up later.
70 INT. WEIGHT ROOM - NIGHT 70
Miguel does bicep curls alone in the weight room, when...
...Brad Johnson enters. They exchange hello gestures, and
proceed to workout on opposite sides of the room. After
finishing his set, Miguel turns to Brad.
(struggling in English)
Thanks... I got lucky.
They continue with their respective routines.
71 INT. WESTERN UNION - NIGHT 71
CLOSE ON Miguel's hands counting out seven fifty-dollar bills.
He approaches the CLERK behind thick, bullet-proof glass, and
slides the money and routing slip through a retractable tray.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 37.
He smiles BIG at the clerk. Proud.
72 INT. ALL NIGHT DINER - NIGHT 72
The usual waitress hovers over Miguel, alone at the usual booth.
French toast, right?
No... Egg. Egg, please.
Eggs. No problem. How would you
Miguel stares at her.
Um, okay, uh... Scrambled? Over easy?
Sunny side up?
A beat... He didn't count on this part. He thinks hard,
(giving up, embarrassed)
No eggs? You sure?
Alright, honey. French toast it is.
As she leaves, Miguel shakes his head, dejected. Stares out the
A72 MINUTES LATER. The waitress returns with french toast and A72
another plate with samples of different eggs.
Okay... This is scrambled. Scrambled.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 38.
(pointing on plate)
This one's tricky... Sunny-side-up.
Sunny side up... On the house.
Miguel gets to work on his food, feeling good.
73 EXT. CLUBHOUSE ENTRANCE - DAY 73
Miguel leans against the wall, eyes closed. He whispers a
prayer to himself, then heads inside the...
74 INT. CLUBHOUSE - DAY 74
...where he passes a dejected-looking Antonio, on his way out.
Antonio avoids eye contact, and Miguel understands what's
He sees Marcos, Julio, and a few other players lingering near
the bulletin board. He approaches, cautiously.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 39.
They're sending Antonio back.
Shit. What about you guys?
We're staying here. Rookie ball.
Miguel nervously glances over to the list.
Go take a look.
Miguel goes to the board scans the names on a roster, finds his.
INSERT: We PAN from his name to "(A) Bridgetown, Iowa"
I'm not with you guys?
Straight to Single A, bro. With Jorge.
Where is Iowa?
75 EXT/INT. MOVING BUS - IOWA HIGHWAY - DAY 75
Various images of vast Midwest farmlands... corn country.
Miguel looks out the window at the passing landscape.
76 EXT. BRIDGETOWN, IOWA BUS DEPOT - DAY 76
Bridgetown's number one baseball fans, EARL HIGGINS (70) and his
wife HELEN HIGGINS (also 70) watch as the bus pulls into the
depot. They're holding a sign that says: "Miguel Santos #1"
About a dozen young players hop off the bus and grab their bags.
Some of them jump into waiting taxis, but Miguel sees his name
on the Higgins' sign.
Can't I stay with you guys?
Don't worry, Sugar. The Higgins are
good people. I stayed with them last
time I played here.
Jorge walks over towards the Higgins with Miguel.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 40.
Then why don't you stay with them
They have a no girls policy.
Jorge! Good to see you back in
Jorge hugs Helen, shakes hands with Earl.
Thank you. This is Miguel.
Orlando whistles to Jorge from a taxi.
I go now. Take care of my friend.
Jorge waves goodbye to the Higgins, pats Miguel on the back, and
hops in a cab with Orlando and Ed.
Awkward beat, as Miguel, Earl, and Helen stand in silence.
77 EXT/INT. HIGGINS CAR - DAY 77
Earl and Helen ramble on in English, while Miguel spaces out the
back window at the passing corn stalks, which are strikingly
similar to the sugar cane stalks back home.
We've had Dominicans, Venezuelan boys,
a Colombian, one from Panama, blacks
and some Americans. Mostly Spanish
boys, though. Johan Santana, Mendy
Lopez and Ramon Martinez all stayed
with us. Years ago.
Last year we had this boy, Junior
Sanchez. Nice boy. Decent with the
glove, but couldn't bunt to save his
Two-for-twelve in sacrifice situations.
Cost the team at least two victories.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 41.
Oh, that's being generous! I'd say
four or five.
78 INT. HIGGINS FARMHOUSE - DAY 78
Miguel, Earl, and Helen enter the old, crickety home.
Put your things down. I'll show you
79 INT. KITCHEN 79
This is the kitchen. Help yourself to
whatever you'd like. You can make a
list of special foods you like to eat
and put it here.
Helen points to a grocery list tucked under a broccoli magnet.
Oh, and over here, this drawer is a
She pulls open the silverware drawer.
You have to be careful or...
She pulls it a little too far and it falls off its rail. Miguel
80 INT. WASHER/DRYER ROOM 80
This is the washer and the dryer. For
your clothes. You put the soap in this
Miguel looks at her, confused. Did she just say "soup"?
The other one's just hot air.
A80 INT. STAIRCASE A80
Miguel follows Helen up the stairs.
Your room is up here.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 42.
81 IN THE BATHROOM 81
(in bad Spanish)
She laughs. Miguel smiles, appreciating the effort.
82 INT. MIGUEL'S NEW BEDROOM 82
Your new cuarto. Bedroom. Do with it
as you please. Just no girls. Chicas?
Miguel smiles, understanding.
83 INT. KITCHEN - LATER 83
Earl and Helen break down the rules for Miguel at the table.
No drinking. No cervezas in the casa.
No chicas in the bedroom.
I already told him that one.
Okay. What about quiet time?
Right. There's no real curfew, but you
must be quiet after ten.
(holding index finger to
Shhhh... after diez.
Si! That's all we ask. It's our job
to keep you healthy and focused on
And we take pride in that.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 43.
84 EXT. HIGGINS PORCH - DUSK 84
Helen brings a large glass of lemonade to Miguel gently swaying
on the porch swing.
She nods, looks out over the landscape, and for the first time
...an EXTREME WIDE SHOT of the Higgins house, which seems to be
situated in the middle of nowhere. The low sun casts a dreamy
Days of Heaven glow over the image. A tiny Helen Higgins
returns inside the house, while Miguel continues to sway on the
porch swing, alone. Hold.
FADE TO BLACK.
85 INT. MIGUEL'S HOME (DOMINICAN REPUBLIC) - DUSK 85
Carmen talks into the phone.
Everyone is so proud, Miguelito. It's
all we can talk about.
A85 We INTERCUT between Carmen and Miguel IN HIS NEW IOWA BEDROOM. A85
Did you get the money?
Good. And Victor? Can he start
construction on the house again? I'll
be sending money every two weeks now.
We just paid him. He's coming next
What about you? You get something for
yourself like I said?
Me? What do I need?
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 44.
You didn't get anything?
Well, maybe I got some new shoes, but
I'm not telling.
Erica strolls by, yells into phone...
Three pairs, Miguel! But who's
Miguel laughs on his end.
Good for you, mom.
Miguel! Time for dinner!
I have to go, mom. The lady is calling
me. Smells like dinner.
Dinner? Don't forget who your real
mother is, Miguelito. Are you going to
prefer her cooking to mine now?
Impossible... I love you, mom.
Everyone loves and misses you. Strike
one out for me, okay?
86 INT. HIGGINS DINING ROOM- DUSK 86
The Higgins' son, MICHAEL (40s), and his wife, HILARY (40s), and
their daughter, ANNE (17), join Earl and Helen for Miguel's
first dinner in Iowa.
Helen leads the table in grace...
Dear Lord... Thank you for the meal we
are about to eat. And for blessing us
with our new guest. And guiding him
safely on his journey from the
Dominican Republic to Bridgetown...
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 45.
Miguel glances around the table. Everyone's head is bowed and
His eyes stop on Anne, seated across from him. She's an
attractive all-American girl, but would never dream of flaunting
her good looks. After taking her in, Miguel closes his eyes.
...And finally, Lord... Please look
kindly over the Swing this season. May
all the players stay healthy and...
well, why not?... if there's anything
you can do to help us win another
championship, we'll take that too...
The table laughs, followed by a chorus of Amens. Miguel opens
his eyes, greeted with smiles. He smiles too, as everyone
passes dishes around the table.
So, Miguel... Do - you - eat - meatloaf
- back home?
I already told you, Michael, he doesn't
speak any English.
I know but... I'm curious to know what
he thinks of the meatloaf.
What do you care? You didn't cook it.
I doubt they have meatloaf in the
Dominican Republic, dear.
I bet they have something similar.
They probably just have another name
All eyes are on Miguel as he nervously takes a bite.
A suspenseful beat, until...
...he smiles and nods.
Everyone sighs, smiles, and nods back.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 46.
This is good old-fashioned American
home cooking, Miguel. Welcome to
I like. Thank you.
Well, very good, Miguel. De nada to
you, mi amigo. De nada to you.
Anne smiles at Miguel, a little embarrassed by her grandpa.
Miguel smiles back, then gets back to his meatloaf.
87 INT. BRIDGETOWN SWING CLUBHOUSE - DAY 87
The team's CLUBHOUSE MANAGER (19, redheaded freckle face), hands
out schedules to a handful of returning players.
If you guys ever need tickets for
family or friends, just let me know two
days ahead of time. Thursday's opener
is already sold out, but I saved one
row, so you need to speak up now...
Miguel enters the room, looking for his locker. The Clubby
Santos - you're over there.
Clubby points Miguel in the right direction, where he finds his
locker and several pressed jerseys waiting for him. Miguel
takes his practice jersey, sits down in front of the locker,
(in bad Spanish)
Que pasa, hermano?
Brad pats Miguel on the back. Miguel is excited to see a
(in bad English)
What up, Flaco?
Dude, I was totally psyched when I saw
your name on the squad. Good times.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 47.
Brad finds his locker, and they both suit up.
88 INT/EXT. UNDERGROUND CORRIDOR - MINUTES LATER 88
We follow Miguel through the tunnel, which leads out to the...
89 BRIDGETOWN SWING BALL PARK FIELD 89
A stunning little park that sits at the Mississippi River's
edge, underneath the Crescent Bridge. A dozen scattered players
warm up on the lush green grass.
A wide-eyed Miguel steps onto the field for the first time and
takes it all in. Hold.
FADE TO BLACK.
90 INT. WESTLAND MALL - DAY 90
Miguel and Jorge stroll through the mall. Miguel notes the
steady barrage of discount signs, plastic jewelry kiosks, and
91 INT. DEPARTMENT STORE - MINUTES LATER 91
Miguel follows Jorge through the men's section when a rack of
Hanes underwear catches his eye. He turns a package over.
INSERT: in a little corner of the package Miguel reads, "MADE IN
THE DOMINICAN REPUBLIC".
He checks the price tag.
C'mon, bro, let's find you a suit.
I can't afford a suit.
I didn't say buy a suit. I said find a
suit. So when you make it big, you'll
already know what looks good.
92 INT. DEPARTMENT STORE SUIT SECTION - NOT MUCH LATER 92
Miguel emerges from the dressing room in a white suit and
electric blue collared shirt.
Hot damn! That's what's up!
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 48.
You like it?
I love it! You look like an all-star,
Miguel admires himself in the mirror.
(in a fake announcer
voice, in English)
"Starting pitcher for American
League... from Kansas City... Miguel...
Jorge fakes massive crowd applause. Miguel laughs.
What about you, man? You try one.
Jorge shrugs, smiles.
Me? Nah... I'm all washed up.
Jorge gets distracted by a pack of TEENAGE GIRLS cruising by.
They smile at the players, who smile back.
Dude. You have no idea. Just wait
till we go to Big Muddy's.
Jorge reaches into his wallet, removes his ID, hands it to
You gotta be 21 to drink there. This
is my old license. They won't know the
Miguel looks at Jorge's ID photo, cracks up.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 49.
Are you kidding me? Nobody's gonna
believe I'm this ugly fool.
Believe me; they won't know the
93 EXT. WESTLAND MALL PARKING LOT - DAY 93
Miguel and Jorge each carry a shopping bag for Helen. Miguel
also carries a plastic bag of his own. All three of them are
licking ice cream cones.
94 INT. MIGUEL'S ROOM - DAY 94
Miguel takes a new calendar out of a plastic shopping bag. It
features iconic images of New York City. He peels off the
plastic and pins it to the month of April on his wall.
CLOSE ON Miguel's hands tearing open a small package from his
family back home: we linger on a crudely drawn sketch of a
baseball player with a Kansas City jersey from Luis, along with
a photo of Carmen, Erica, and Luis posing in front of the frame
of the new house.
Miguel smiles, reads the enclosed letter.
95 EXT. BRIDGETOWN SWING BALL PARK - LATE AFTERNOON 95
Opening Night. There's an air of excitement in the stands and
on the field. The small park's seats are packed with fans.
96 INT. RADIO ANNOUNCERS' BOOTH 96
JACK JEFFERIES (White, 50s) overlooks the field, speaks into the
Hey there, Swing fans, welcome to
another exciting season of Swing
baseball. As always we've got some new
faces who we'll get to know this year--
like Brad Johnson, the highly touted
2nd baseman out of Stanford. He'll
make his professional debut tonight.
Great night for Swing baseball... And
also a great night to grab a bite and a
brew at Harlow's after the game - your
local pub and proud sponsor...
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 50.
97 EXT. ON THE FIELD 97
As a YOUNG LADY begins singing the Star-Spangled Banner, Miguel
takes off his hat, looks out to the American Flag. Hold on his
98 EXT. IN THE DUGOUT 98
We STAY ON Miguel for the game's highlights, JUMP CUTTING his
reactions to the best plays of the game.
PLAY 1: he casually spits sunflower seed shells, then CLAPS the
final out of the inning, high-fiving players returning to the
PLAY 2: chats to Jorge, when they react to the CRACK of the
bat, leap to their feet, eagerly anticipate an umpire's call,
and CHEER when the call goes their team's way.
PLAY 3: grimaces at the sight of a hit-by-pitch.
PLAY 4: leaps to his feet, CLAPS.
PLAY 5: leaps to his feet, doesn't clap. Sits back down.
PLAY 6: Miguel and Jorge sway to the seventh inning stretch
classic "Take Me Out to the Ball Game."
PLAY 7: sitting with Brad, they both point to something on the
field and crack up laughing. Of course, we don't see what
they're laughing at.
PLAY 8: standing with Jorge and the rest of the players, the
mood is tense. The players react to a hit ball, as their heads
jerk toward the outfield, waiting, waiting, waiting, and...
A98 CELEBRATION! Whatever happened, the game is over and we follow A98
the players out onto the field to mob Brad, who just scored the
99 EXT. BIG MUDDY'S FRONT ENTRANCE - NIGHT 99
The BOUNCER examines Miguel's photo ID, which is actually
Jorge's. He shoots Miguel a suspicious look, but hands it back
and lets him through.
100 INT. BIG MUDDY'S - NIGHT 100
Some of the Swing players celebrate their first victory with
beers at the local bar/dance club. A few of the guys dance with
LOCAL GIRLS, but Jorge and Miguel stand against the wall, beers
in hand, as they watch the MTV-inspired GRINDING and FREAKING
unfolding before them.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 51.
You think they know how to salsa?
Go for it, bro. But remember, just
cause they dance with you, doesn't mean
they want anything else.
Orlando and Ed approach with a couple brews.
Not from you, anyway.
Miguel notices Brad stroll by, calls him over.
What's up fellas? Good game.
They all toast beers.
What's with the flaco? I mean...
(flexing his arm)
You call this flaco?
Everyone laughs, as Jorge eyes TWO WOMEN on the dance floor.
Let's do it.
101 INT. BIG MUDDY'S DANCE FLOOR 101
Jorge whispers in one of the girls' ears and the two of them
begin dancing with him and Miguel. At first cautious, Miguel
and his partner ease closer, until Miguel's hands are on her
hips, leading her in rhythm to the hip-hop jam, while mixing in
some Latin moves as well.
As Miguel and Jorge carve and twist with their partners, several
local bar PATRONS begin to take notice of their fancy footwork.
But Miguel might be dancing too well for one DRUNK JACKASS in
...wanders over, gets in Miguel's face.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 52.
Careful, Paco. This ain't the jungle.
Miguel stares him down. A few clubbers in the immediate
vicinity stop dancing, observe. Jorge steps between them,
...apparently, drunken egos speak the same language everywhere
because Jorge and the Jackass start jawing back and forth in
their native tongues. Both seem to be understanding the other,
though the MUSIC is too loud to hear anything specific.
Brad and the Venezuelans run over to break it up before anything
serious starts. They all hustle out to...
102 EXT. BIG MUDDY'S PARKING LOT - NIGHT 102
The Latin players spill out into the brisk night air with Brad
and the Swing's designated hitter, JEFF ELKS.
They all pile into Brad's car, as a few locals stand near the
club's entrance, watching them go.
103 EXT. HIGGINS FARMHOUSE - NIGHT 103
The car pulls up near the house and Miguel stumbles out, as the
wild bunch inside HOOT and HOLLER.
The car backs down the road and the players' voices fade out
with the hum of the engine.
An upstairs light goes on. Miguel looks up to the Higgins'
bedroom where Helen's silhouetted figure lingers in the window.
He tiptoes inside.
The sound of a CHURCH CHOIR fades in, and carries over to...
104 INT. CHURCH - DAY 104
With the exception of Miguel, the all-white congregation sings
hymns about Jesus and the Lord. He tries to suppress a yawn
when he sees Anne Higgins singing in the choir. She notices
him as she sings. A smile.
Miguel perks up.
105 EXT. CHURCH PARKING LOT - DAY 105
CHURCHGOERS flood out of the church after the service. Anne
walks alongside Miguel.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 53.
How'd you like the service?
(off his blank stare)
Our church? Hope it wasn't too boring
for you. Did you go to church in the
He shakes his head.
I am sorry. I do not understand.
S'okay. You understand more than a lot
of folks around here I bet.
He nods, still unsure.
So listen, me and some friends are
hanging out later. You should stop by
my house after the game. It's gonna be
super chill. Grandma can take you
there, but here...
She stops a random CHURCHGOER...
Can I borrow a pen real quick?
The churchgoer hands over a pen, and Anne writes her address on
After the game. My house... Good
Anne runs off. Miguel looks after her, mystified.
106 INT. SWING CLUBHOUSE - LATE AFTERNOON 106
Half-uniformed players hang out, eating sandwiches, passing
around a PLAYBOY magazine, signing souvenir baseballs, and
talking at full volume. Hip-hop BLASTS from a stereo, competing
with an old DUKES OF HAZARD rerun on the TV. HARDY, the
Bridgetown Swing mascot, passes through with his enormous monkey
head under one arm.
Miguel sits at his locker, psyching himself up for his first
start. He touches Luis' drawing, which is taped to the inside
of his locker. Closes his eyes, takes a deep breath.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 54.
107 EXT. BRIDGETOWN SWING BALL PARK - LATE AFTERNOON 107
ON THE MOUND. Miguel opens his eyes, as the LEAD-OFF HITTER
steps into the batter's box. He takes a moment, crosses
himself. Play ball.
Miguel nods to his catcher, Orlando, then fires in the first
pitch high for a ball.
When he gets the ball back, he looks to the stands, where...
...Earl, Helen, Michael, and Hilary sit uncomfortably close to
the field in choice box seats.
He takes a nervous breath, fires in the second pitch. Ball two.
Same for the third. And forth.
The batter jogs to first, and the crowd GRUMBLES.
108 INT. RADIO ANNOUNCERS' BOOTH 108
Jack Jefferies does his thing on the mic.
Santos, apparently feeling the
butterflies on his first professional
outing. Hailing all the way from the
Dominican Republic, Santos wowed the
club with his power during Spring
Training. But he's off to a rocky
109 ON THE MOUND 109
Jorge comes over from third base as the batter walks to first.
Relax, Sugar. It's the same game we
played back home. That's all it is.
Just a game, man. So relax. Let's
have some fun. Okay?
Miguel nods. Jorge points out the next batter. Another
See? Just like home.
Jorge runs back to his position at third. Miguel tucks his
index finger into his knuckle curve grip. Delivers...
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 55.
That's it! There it is!
And the next pitch...
...is hit sharply to Jorge at third, who fires it over to second
for one, and on to first for a double play.
The crowd goes WILD and Miguel finally exhales.
One, two, three... he mows down the next BATTER on three
consecutive strikes. More APPLAUSE.
110 IN THE DUGOUT 110
Orlando hands him his first strikeout ball. Miguel takes a
seat, wipes the sweat from his head, then looks down at Anne's
address scribbled on his forearm.
111 SCOREBOARD - LATER THAT NIGHT 111
We PAN RIGHT across six innings of zeroes. The Swing are
leading 4 to nothing in the top of the 7th.
112 ON THE FIELD 112
THWACK! The HITTER smokes a double off the left-center wall.
113 INT. RADIO ANNOUNCERS' BOOTH 113
Nearly unhittable for the first 6
innings, that was only the second hit
allowed by Santos tonight.
114 BACK ON THE FIELD. 114
The next BATTER dribbles a spinning groundball at Jorge, but it
squirts through his legs into left field, allowing the runner to
score an unearned run from second.
Stu walks toward the mound, signals for the bullpen. He and
Orlando greet Miguel on the mound.
Good game, kid. Enjoy this...
Nice work, Sugar.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 56.
(in Spanish, to Orlando)
But that wasn't my fault. I can go
Take it easy; it's your first game.
Though he doesn't speak Spanish, Stu knows exactly what's
happening. He takes the ball from Miguel with a smile, but
Miguel doesn't move, still reluctant to leave the mound.
As the FANS begin to cheer his stellar debut...
You hear that? It's for you, kid.
Orlando smiles, pats Miguel on the butt, and Miguel finally
starts his slow walk off the field. As we follow him off, the
FANS rise to their feet and Miguel approaches the dugout to a
standing ovation. On his way in, he's greeted by his teammates
with congratulatory high-fives.
AT THIRD Jorge stares at the dirt, frustrated by his misplay.
115 EXT. BRIDGETOWN SWING BALLPARK - AFTER THE GAME 115
FIREWORKS EXPLODE in the sky as the kids in the crowd watch
116 IN THE DUGOUT 116
Miguel and a few other players hang over the railing, enjoying
the awesome display.
117 EXT. ANNE'S HOUSE - NIGHT 117
Miguel rings the doorbell, waits. He's holding a baseball.
Anne opens the door.
Hey Miguel. C'mon inside.
He hands her the ball like it's a rose.
(in rehearsed English)
My first... strike-out.
Oh, Miguel... you're so sweet.
Congratulations, I heard you pitched
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 57.
118 INT. ANNE'S HOUSE - MINUTES LATER 118
Some kind of casual teenage party is in effect. Pizza boxes are
spread around the living room and everyone (12-15 WHITE KIDS)
are drinking soda from plastic cups. No booze.
Hey everybody, this is Miguel. He's
from the Dominican Republic, and now he
pitches for the Swing.
Everyone manages to say "Hi Miguel" at the same time.
119 GAME ROOM - A LITTLE LATER 119
Two guys, RANDY and TRAVIS, play a spirited game of foozeball,
while Miguel looks on, fascinated.
What's up, man?
No. Thank you.
It's like soccer. You play soccer?
Soccer? No. Baseball.
Well this is called fooze-ball. Fooze-
Yeah, you got it.
Miguel looks for Anne, sees her going over some papers with
another kid. She sees Miguel, waves, then gets back to her
I used to be a pitcher. In little
league. I wasn't very good though.
Miguel nods, and another girl, WENDY, chimes in.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 58.
I heard that the beaches in the
Dominican Republic are really
Miguel nods again. They stand in silence for an awkward beat,
sipping from their red, plastic cups, until...
Hey guys, let's get started. Everyone
grab a seat.
The teens crowd into the living room, squeezing together on
sofas, recliners, and desk chairs. Miguel sits behind the
majority of the group, not sure what's going on. Anne stands
I'm so glad you all came. Last year,
we didn't have half as many people in
our group. So, I think this just goes
to show the great work we've been doing
in spreading the word. But this year,
I want us to work harder. Now, I know
a lot of you are studying for SATs or
working on college applications. And
all of that is important, but we need
to remember that our spiritual
accomplishments are more important.
What we do in school or for a job...
that's just a small part of who we are.
We're only here by the grace of God, so
let's get out there and share that
Miguel watches, still unsure what's going on.
120 LIVING ROOM - A LITTLE LATER 120
Anne leads the group in song, while Randy plays the piano.
Miguel watches; he's the only person not singing.
One there is above all others,
Oh, how He loves!
His is love beyond a brother's,
Oh, how He loves!
Earthly friends may fail or leave us,
One day soothe, the next day grieve us;
But this Friend will ne'er deceive us:
Oh, how He loves!
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 59.
Miguel observes, a little disappointed, as this is not quite the
date he was hoping for.
121 EXT/INT. MOVING BUS - DAY 121
Miguel and Brad are side by side in neighboring aisle seats,
while Jorge and Jeff catch some Zs against the window. Miguel's
"English for Baseball Players" workbook is on his lap, but he
and Brad discuss language that won't likely be found there...
Mamañema. Very bad. Very bad word.
Mama-ñema? What's it mean?
Miguel mimes fellatio.
Yeah, we say cocksucker.
(in bad Spanish)
Who is your favorite player?
(in bad English)
Robinson Cano for the Yankees. I know
him brother. And you?
Who is that?
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 60.
What? You don't know about Clemente?
Puerto Rican. I can't believe it. This
is tragic. Do you know who Babe Ruth
Baby Ruth? El chocolate?
Brad stares at Miguel for a beat, and they both crack up.
Hey, how'd it go with that girl the
Yeah, didn't you have a date, or
Oh, she no es my girl.
Brad senses Miguel's disappointment in the matter.
No sweat, bro. We'll find you a little
honey on the road.
Miguel smiles. Brad picks up his mp3 player, searches the menu
You like The White Stripes?
I don't know.
Check it out.
Miguel grabs his portable CD player, hands it to Brad, trading
music with him. As Miguel places Brad's Bose headphones over
his ears, The White Stripes' "Seven Nation Army" infuses the
soundtrack and leads us through the following...
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 61.
122 EARLY SEASON SWING BASEBALL SEQUENCE: 122
--The Swing players sprint out of the dugout to their positions
at BRIDGETOWN BALLPARK, while Miguel struts to the mound with
A122 --AT A VISITING TEAM'S STADIUM, Miguel throws a series of A122
strikes and batters WHIFF.
B122 --Miguel ices down his arm after a game. B122
C122 --Ed sneaks up behind Miguel while he's talking to Brad and C122
drops a handful of ice down his shirt.
H122 --AT A VISITING BALL PARK Brad makes a diving stop. H122
D122 --AT THEIR HOME PARK, Stu works with Miguel in the early D122
afternoon, before the other players have arrived.
J122 --Brad slides in safely at second base. J122
F122 --Miguel runs videotape during one of his off days. F122
G122 --Jorge strikes out. G122
J122 --Miguel and Jorge eat eggs at a local diner. J122
123 --AT THE WESTERN UNION, Miguel hands $300 through the glass to 123
124 --ON THE BUS, Brad hands Miguel a local paper, featuring a photo124
of Miguel on the mound.
"Santos stings Owls with 8 Ks." What
kind of shoddy journalism is this?
There's nothing' about me in here.
Miguel smiles, takes the paper, examines it.
125 --IN A MOTEL ROOM, Miguel enthusiastically talks on the phone 125
with his mom back home.
A125 --AT A VISITING TEAM BALLPARK, Miguel picks off a runner at A125
126 --Jorge does physical therapy for his knee while Miguel 126
stretches out his pitching arm.
127 --Miguel watches videotape of his pitching with Stu in the 127
A127 --Miguel, Jorge, Orlando and Ed sit in the dugout, respectfullyA127
listen as a chaplain gives a sermon in Spanish.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 62.
At the other end of the dugout, some of the American players
listen to a Sunday morning sermon in English.
B127 --TRACK IN on Miguel as he fires in another strike. B127
128 --A KID hands Miguel a baseball card and pen for his autograph. 128
Miguel coolly obliges like he's been doing this for years.
129 --IN THE RADIO BOOTH, after a game, Jack Jefferies, interviews 129
Miguel with Orlando acting as translator.
At what point in the game did you
realize you had your best stuff?
(doing his best)
When did you know you were going to be
a good pitcher in this game?
I knew from the time I was very young I
would be a good pitcher. Ten, eleven
years old. Thanks to God, I have had
the opportunity to develop my talents.
(translating in English)
He knew very early that he was going to
pitch good. Eleven years.
Jack Jefferies nods, confused. Miguel and Orlando look at each
END EARLY SEASON SEQUENCE.
130 INT. MOTEL ROOM - NIGHT 130
Miguel checks his appearance in the bathroom mirror, while Jorge
talks on the telephone with somebody back home. Jorge appears
anguished, as he struggles to speak.
It's not good. Because I haven't been
playing good... No. I'm working hard,
but, I don't know... I think they
(Jorge glances back toward
Listen, I can't talk now.
Miguel gets the hint, steps out of his room into the...
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 63.
131 MOTEL HALLWAY 131
...and we follow Miguel through the lobby, which opens up into
an enormous arcade with blinking neon lights, and whistling
machines everywhere. His senses on the verge of overload, he
continues through the arcade, which then opens up into a...
132 FUN CITY BOWLING ALLEY 132
Miguel notices Brad bowling with some GIRLS and other players.
Miguel watches for a beat as they laugh at one of the girl's
gutter balls. He thinks about going over to say hello, but
decides against it, heads back toward the arcade.
133 INT. MOTEL ROOM - LATER 133
While Jorge sleeps, Miguel carves a small piece of wood with a
swiss army knife. Stops when he hears a burst of MALE AND
FEMALE VOICES coming from down the hall. He, goes to the door,
The drunken giggling VOICES get louder as they approach. Miguel
looks through the peephole, sees...
...Brad and Jeff with TWO LOCAL GIRLS disappear into their room
across the hall.
Miguel puts his ear to the door again, but can't hear anything,
so he returns to the desk, begins carving again.
134 EXT/INT. MOVING BUS - DAY 134
Orlando and Ed play a spirited game of Casino on a Gatorade jug
in the aisle while Miguel, Jorge and Brad chat about movies.
Did you ever see "Y Tu Mama Tambien"?
Y tu mama what?
Y Tu Mama Tambien... It's Mexican.
Jorge laughs, shakes his head.
No, I don't know this.
What are your favorite movies?
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 64.
I like Matrisse.
Oh, Matrisse. Very strong.
Matrisse? What's that?
He doesn't know Matrisse?
You don't know The Matrisse?
The Mattress? I don't know.
(turns to Jeff, beside
Dude, do you know a movie called The
Oh, shit! The MATRIX!!
Yeah, yeah, the Matrix is badass. I
was like, Mattress? What?
135 INT. MIGUEL'S BEDROOM - DUSK 135
He finishes up a birthday card to his sister Erica, encloses it
in a padded envelope along with the wooden etching he carved
earlier - a pendant with a cornstalk design. The NYC calendar
on the wall in the background indicates we are now in JUNE.
When he's done, he goes to his duffel, pulls out his English
Miguel sits on his bed, opens the book.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 65.
136 EXT. BRIDGETOWN SWING BALL PARK - DAY 136
A batter swings and misses for strike three. The catcher throws
the ball around the horn.
Miguel steps off the mound, grabs the rosin bag for traction,
gets the ball back.
His next pitch is hit on the ground toward the first base line,
where the first baseman makes a nice back-handed play...
Miguel sprints over to cover the bag, receives the toss, but...
...the RUNNER storms into Miguel before he has time to pull his
foot off the bag, knocking them both hard to the ground. The
runner is called out, but Miguel is slow getting to his feet.
Stu and the TRAINER run out to check on him. Jorge rushes over
from third, and Orlando also comes to help translate.
Nice play, kid. How's your foot?
Miguel nods, but he's limping back to the mound.
Take it easy. Don't force it. How's
Don't push it. Does it hurt?
Let him toss a few warm-ups.
The umpire grants Miguel a few "test" pitches.
Visibly shaken, Miguel sets up for a warm-up pitch, breathes
deeply, and delivers. He lands gingerly on his right ankle,
makes a face.
Stu and the trainer exchange glances. Miguel notices this, as
he sets up for another pitch. The trainer shakes his head, no.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 66.
All right, kid. Give it a rest.
As Stu reaches for the ball, Miguel pulls it away.
I am okay. Please.
Stu and the trainer sense Miguel's anxiety. Stu puts his arm on
Miguel's shoulder for comfort.
You're okay, I know, but let's just be
sure... Give me the ball, son.
Miguel sizes them up, reluctantly hands the ball over, and limps
off the field with Stu and the other players looking after.
137 INT. ANNE'S HOUSE - DINING ROOM - NIGHT 137
The whole family, with a couple new additions, sit around the
table in mid-meal: Earl, Helen, Anne, Michael, Hilary, Jorge,
Brad and Miguel. Miguel wears a big blue boot on his injured
foot, and a crutch leans against the wall behind him.
You've been pitching so well... it's a
Don't worry, Miguel, you'll bounce
Miguel pokes at his food, avoids eye contact.
Where'd you say you were from, Brad?
Oh, different world out there, huh?
You like to surf?
Uh, no, I've never tried it. But maybe
Your parents visit here?
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 67.
Yeah, I hope so. Maybe when they get
some time off this summer.
How about you, Miguel? What's your
Yeah. Like, who do you live with back
I live with my mother, sister,
brother... and Abuela?
Miguel looks to Jorge for help.
How about your father, Miguel?
My father, uh...
(searching for the word)
Anne nudges her dad under the table.
Oh, Miguel, honey. I'm so sorry.
Miguel nods, takes a bite of potatoes. There is an awkward beat
as everybody chews.
Miguel musters all his language skills to break the awkward
(to Michael and Hilary)
You have other child...?
Yes, we have a son. Anne's older
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 68.
He's in Iraq.
Brad pauses from chewing, looks around, and nods. More awkward
138 EXT. ANNE'S PORCH - NIGHT 138
Miguel and Anne sit alone on the porch. We can hear CHATTER
from inside, where the others are clearing the table.
You like it here in Iowa?
Yes. I like... Many new things.
(thinks for a beat)
I bet. You've traveled a long way,
huh? God must have something special
in mind for you...
Anne points out a small scar on Miguel's scalp.
What happened there?
Uh... When I boy... Um... I don't know--
Tell me in Spanish.
(in Spanish, no subtitles)
Okay... When I was little, I wanted to
eat some cherries from a tree. It
wasn't our tree, and there was a fence
to keep us kids away.
Anne hangs on his every word as if she understood perfectly.
So I climbed up the fence to knock down
some cherries with a stick, but I when
I took my first swing-- whoosh. I
fell. There was a lot of blood.
Anne reaches out, lightly touches his scar. Her hand lingers
for a beat, until...
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 69.
...Miguel leans in and kisses her. She kisses him back for a
beat, but when he puts his hand around her waist, pulling her
closer, she resists. They separate.
Anne looks down at her feet, uncomfortable.
Sorry, I just... Sorry.
Miguel looks on, confused, as she stands. They lock eyes for an
I should help clean up...
On her way back inside...
We have another meeting Thursday... If
you can come.
Miguel nods. Anne leaves him on the porch alone. He looks out
over the corn fields.
139 INT. SWING CLUBHOUSE - DAY 139
Miguel enters the near-empty room limping on his blue boot,
finds Jorge wearing street clothes and packing up personal
things from his locker. Miguel knows immediately what's
They make eye contact from across the locker room. Nobody
moves. After a beat...
I had a good run.
You know the drill. I'm not playing
well, so they'll bring up somebody who
What about your knee? You just need
some more time... You're recovering.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 70.
When do you leave?
They want me to fly back tonight.
But I'm not going back...
A beat as Miguel lets this sink in.
I gotta cousin in New York.
You're going to New York?
Where else? There's no work back home.
My bonus won't last forever...
Miguel looks off. Jorge senses his anxiety.
Relax Sugar, I'll see you at Yankee
Stadium someday... when the Knights
come to town. I'll be in the front
row, getting drunk, and cheering the
Not for you though. Yankee fans are
crazy. I can't take the risk... I'll
A beat as Miguel looks at Jorge with concern. Jorge shakes it
You worry too much, Sugar. I'll be
okay. I mean, it's just a game, right?
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 71.
140 INT. SOFIA'S HOUSE (DOMINICAN REPUBLIC) - NIGHT 140
A140 Sofia on the phone. We INTERCUT between her and Miguel IN HIS A140
BEDROOM, his injured ankle elevated on a pillow.
How'd you play tonight?
I bet you have lots of groupies waiting
for you after your games.
I have a few.
Just kidding. I mean I would, but none
of these white girls speak Spanish.
Marcos plays in Arizona. Lots of
Mexicans; everyone speaks Spanish. He
has like fifteen girlfriends.
He's probably lying though.
I bet he's lying.
A beat, as Miguel shifts gears...
Jorge went to New York.
To the Yankees?
No. Our team cut him loose. He's got
a cousin there... I don't know what
he's going to do...
Shit... What about his family?
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 72.
(his mind somewhere else)
It's not right. He got injured playing
for them. They owe him another chance.
He's worked too hard for too long... I
mean he's not a horse.
Miguel drifts off, and they sit in silence for a beat.
But you can't let it get to you.
You've got nothing to worry about.
Just keep playing well, and things will
Yeah... I know. Things will be okay.
Miguel looks off, not so sure.
141 INT. SWING CLUBHOUSE - DAY 141
Players lounge in uniform, relaxing before tonight's game. Brad
reads on the sofa across from Miguel, who is in his street
clothes, his crutch by his side.
What is your book?
Welcome to the Terrordome. It's about
sports and politics.
You study at, um, university?
Yeah, I went to Stanford. Studied
history and baseball. Did you go to
school back in the DR?
Yes. Little. Secondaria?
Yes. A little of... high school. But
I sign when I have sixteen years.
You signed at sixteen? Wow. So you
didn't finish school?
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 73.
Miguel shakes his head, no. After a beat...
If you no play baseball... what you do?
Um... it's hard to say for sure, but I
like history, so I'd probably go to
grad school... maybe teach someday.
Brad! We're up for B.P. Let's go.
Brad gets up, taps Miguel on the shoulder on his way out.
Miguel sits alone on the couch in the empty room, when he looks
IN THE BATHROOM doorway-- Jeff Elks discreetly hands ANOTHER
PLAYER a prescription pill bottle, exits.
Miguel takes note of the transaction, leans back, looks at the
142 INT. HIGGINS FARMHOUSE - DAY 142
Miguel watches "When the Levees Broke" playing on HBO-Latino.
ON THE TV, one image of the hurricane's devastation gives way to
another. An AFRICAN-AMERICAN WOMAN stranded on the roof of her
house. A YOUNG BOY who's lost his mother.
Miguel looks on, moved by the tragedy.
143 INT. WASHER/DRYER ROOM - DAY 143
Miguel takes the initiative and attempts to do his own laundry
while on the disabled list.
He stuffs his clothes into the washer, scrutinizes the
instructions, turns the knobs, and presses the buttons.
144 INT. LIVING ROOM - DAY 144
Miguel studies his English Language workbook on the couch. He
glances at the wall clock.
145 INT. KITCHEN - DAY 145
As Miguel opens the faulty utensils drawer, the folded paper
towel holding it in place pops out. Miguel catches the drawer
from slipping too far, takes out a fork.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 74.
146 INT. KITCHEN - DUSK 146
Miguel sits at the kitchen table with the broken drawer and
several small tools in front of him. He readjusts the wooden
rails on the faulty side of the drawer by sanding them down and
re-gluing them into place.
KNOCK KNOCK KNOCK.
FRONT DOOR. Miguel hobbles over, opens it to find Anne,
carrying a casserole dish and a couple empty platters.
These are grandma's from the other
Miguel lets her pass into the kitchen, put the dishes on the
table. They stand awkwardly for a beat, looking at each other.
We missed you at our meeting, Thursday.
Sorry. I forget.
It's okay, maybe next time.
You want sit?
I gotta go actually, so--
Miguel sits, gets back to work on the drawer. Anne looks at him
for a second, then exits.
Miguel glances out the window, watches Anne climb into a pickup
truck idling in the driveway. Anne and Miguel make brief eye
contact before the truck speeds away, a trail of dust following
it into the distance.
A146 EXT. CORN FIELDS - DUSK A146
Miguel walks down a path in the middle of the Higgins' corn
field. He finds a cob of corn, removes the leaves, and examines
the kernels up close.
ZOOM IN to ECU of a single kernel.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 75.
Miguel stares at the raw corn with strange fascination.
147 INT. SWING CLUBHOUSE - DAY 147
Miguel walks in without crutches, looking healthy. He pounds a
few players hello, then freezes upon seeing Brad's empty locker.
Stu approaches Miguel...
There was an injury to the Wichita
right-fielder. They called up Brad
this morning... He left you this...
Stu hands Miguel an old paperback book.
INSERT: a Spanish-language version of Roberto Clemente's
biography. Miguel opens to the first page, where Brad has
inscribed a note, "See you in Kansas City, Mamañema!"
Miguel smiles, bittersweet, when a familiar VOICE calls out...
Miguel turns around to find Salvador Torres (the once scrawny
kid from the Academy) running at him. They hug.
Holy shit! How'd you get here?
On a airplane, motherfucker.
Miguel playfully flips Salvador's cap bill down over his face
for being a smartass.
Great, you guys know each other. Sal's
our new middle-relief man. Throws a
nasty cutter. You could learn a thing
or two from him, Santos...
Stu walks back towards the coaches' office.
What he say?
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 76.
(not sure himself)
Don't worry about it... Good to see
Good to see you, too, Sugar.
I'm a little nervous.
Look, just remember... it's the same
game we played back home. Same rules,
different place. Just have fun. It's
only a game.
148 EXT. BRIDGETOWN SWING BALL PARK - NIGHT 148
CLOSE ON Miguel swearing at himself, clearly not following his
A RUNNER circles the bases after hitting a homerun.
JACK JEFFERIES (V.O.)
Santos allows his second homerun of the
game. First night off the DL, and not
looking so sharp.
The SCOREBOARD indicates the Swing losing 5-2 in the 4th.
Miguel glances out of the corner of his eye to...
...Stu is scribbling on his scorecard.
MIGUEL quickly sets up for his next pitch, but Stu is on his way
out to the mound. Miguel glances back to the bullpen, where
Salvador is warming up.
Stu signals for Salvador to come in, and we follow Miguel off
the field to scattered applause.
A148 IN THE RADIO BOOTH Jack Jefferies continues his play-by-play ofA148
Sutton makes the call to pull Santos
here in the 4th, bringing in rookie
reliever, Salvador Torres for his
B148 IN THE DUGOUT. Miguel sits on the bench, throws a towel over B148
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 77.
ON THE MOUND. Salvador warms up, looking a little freaked.
Players and fans marvel over Sal's unorthodox, side-armed
delivery. His form is reminiscent of A's legend, Dennis
Eckersly, but without the grace.
MIGUEL peaks through his towel at the action...
ON THE FIELD. Salvador takes a deep breath, delivers his first
Salvador seems to relax. Winds up his next pitch, and...
...the ball appears to zig-zag across the plate, freezing the
hitter in confusion.
MIGUEL can't watch, hides behind the towel again. SLOW ZOOM IN
on Miguel's head, hidden.
Miguel removes the towel, sees...
...SALVADOR smiling big as he comes off the field. Orlando pats
him on the back, hands him his first professional strikeout
C148 IN THE RADIO BOOTH C148
A stellar debut for Torres, who records
the final out, baffling Josh Lansford
with a nasty side-armed cutter.
D148 FROM THE DUGOUT, Salvador arrives to a congratulatory standing D148
ovation from the fans and his teammates.
Welcome to America, kid.
Salvador sits next to Miguel on the bench, admiring the ball.
Just do me a favor... don't give it
away to the first white girl you meet.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 78.
Salvador laughs, but Miguel is serious. He gets up and heads
for the showers.
149 INT. HIGGINS CAR - NIGHT 149
Helen and Earl drive Miguel home after the game. ON THE CAR
RADIO, we can hear a news report of a suicide bombing in Iraq.
Helen turns it down.
You started dropping your arm in the
third. I think that was your problem.
He lost control of his breaking pitches
and they just zeroed in on the
fastball, which isn't as fast as it
used to be.
Don't matter, he can't understand
Miguel stares out the window in the backseat.
150 EXT/INT. MOVING BUS - DUSK 150
CLOSE ON corn stalks passing through frame. Miguel stares out
the bus window. Salvador jokes around with Orlando and Ed about
whether Dominican or Venezuelan girls are better.
151 INT. MOTEL ROOM - NIGHT 151
Miguel tries to sleep, while Salvador watches "Sponge Bob" on
the Spanish channel.
152 EXT. VISITING BALL PARK - AFTERNOON 152
Miguel walks out onto the field, notices Stu working with
Salvador in the bullpen. Out of nowhere, Stu mimes the chicken
walk to Sal, and they both laugh.
153 EXT. VISITING BALL PARK - DUSK 153
Miguel runs videotape behind homeplate as Salvador strikes a
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 79.
154 EXT. VISITING BALL PARK - NIGHT 154
Miguel throws in a pitch, which is lined directly over his head
for a base hit. He swears to himself as he sprints over to back
up home plate where the runner scores easily.
155 INT. VISITORS' CLUBHOUSE - NIGHT 155
Miguel storms into the empty clubhouse, grabs a bat from the
wall rack, and smashes a water dispenser unit to the ground,
spilling water everywhere. As he observes the mess, his
breathing steadies, and...
He glances over to the entrance, where the clubhouse manager
stares at him, disapproving.
156 INT. VISITING COACHES' OFFICE - DAY 156
Miguel sits across from Stu, staring off, embarrassed.
I know it's hard when you don't perform
up to your own expectations for
yourself. But you need to learn self-
control. Can you understand what I'm
saying? You need to learn that your
actions have consequences. So we're
gonna take the cost of the water unit
you broke out of your next check...
That's not something your family back
home's gonna be too proud of... Is it?
Miguel turns his gaze to Stu. Though he doesn't fully
understand what he's saying, Stu's intention is clear.
So you should think real hard next
time. Think about channeling that
frustration you're feeling onto the
field. Into practice. Channel it into
--I am work hard! Everyday I work
So work harder, goddamnit! You think
you're the only one on this team works
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 80.
I don't understand you. You speak too
fast. I just don't understand!
Look, you may think I don't know what
you're going through, but I do. I've
been on the mound; I've played through
pain. I've been in your exact
situation before. I've struggled
As Miguel glances away in frustration, Stu stops himself. They
sit in silence. Hold.
157 EXT. PEORIA CHIEFS' PARK - EVENING 157
Pouring rain. The few remaining FANS head for the exits. The
players pack up their gear in their respective dugouts.
SLOW ZOOM IN on MIGUEL, staring at the falling rain.
158 INT. MOTEL LAUNDRY ROOM - NIGHT 158
CLOSE ON about ten pills in Miguel's palm.
Jeff Elks instructs Miguel, alone, in the small room with a
flickering fluorescent light.
Listen, your first time, take a half.
Okay? No more. You gotta ease into
And anyone finds these, you didn't get
them from me, okay?
Before Miguel can respond, Salvador enters with his dirty
laundry. Miguel hides the pills.
What's up, Sal?
Jeff heads out. Miguel resumes folding his clothes.
Did you hear I made player of the week?
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 81.
You told me last night.
Salvador examines his detergent options from the dispenser
Which one do you use?
Miguel eyes the bleach. Can't help himself.
Salvador inserts coins into the machine, pulls the bleach lever.
159 INT. SWING CLUBHOUSE BATHROOM STALL - THE NEXT EVENING 159
Miguel pops two pills. Exits out into the...
160 SWING CLUBHOUSE - CONTINUOUS 160
...where Salvador undresses out of his bleach-stained street
clothes. Miguel walks past without acknowledging him.
161 EXT. BRIDGETOWN SWING BALL PARK - LATE AFTERNOON 161
THE CAMERA eerily floats toward and around Miguel on the mound.
He stares down the HITTER, totally focused. He touches his
cross, whispers a prayer to himself.
Winds up, throws, and...
...a cloud of dust pops off the catcher's mitt, just like the
old days. Miguel's "stuff" is back. And he knows it.
A161 IN THE STANDS. Earl and Helen settle into their box seats A161
eating caramel corn and cola.
B161 RADIO ANNOUNCERS BOOTH. Jack Jefferies at the mic... B161
Miguel Santos appears to be in top form
tonight, striking out two of three in
the first. I don't want to jinx it,
but this sure looks like the Santos we
knew earlier this season.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 82.
C161 IN THE DUGOUT. There's an intensity we haven't seen before in C161
Miguel. We get the sense he's treating this game like it could
be his last.
162 ON THE MOUND - 2ND INNING 162
CLOSE ON MIGUEL. Sweating more than he should at this point in
the game, but...
...who cares? He continues to dominate opposing hitters,
striking out two more in the 2nd.
A162 IN THE STANDS. Earl and Helen CHEER for their Miguel. A162
163 IN THE DUGOUT - LATER THAT NIGHT 163
Still sweating, Miguel is now shifting his jaw back-and-forth.
The SOUND FADES LOW, as he stares onto the field, sees...
...the teams changing sides between innings, everyone moving in
subtle SLOW-MOTION (36 fps).
Stu approaches Miguel, puts his hand on his shoulder. We see
him mouth the words, "You okay?", but NO SOUND comes out.
Miguel nods, yes.
164 BACK ON THE FIELD - 5TH INNING 164
And back in real time (24 fps). Miguel fires his first pitch
over the head of his catcher and all the way to the backstop.
Orlando motions for him to calm down.
The next pitch is closer, but still high.
And the next pitch BEANS the hitter in the thigh.
Miguel swears at himself, tries hard to calm down, but his heart
A164 IN THE RADIO BOOTH A164
Top of the fifth and Santos is showing
some control issues. Not sure what's
going on down there, but he seems to be
talking to himself.
B164 ON THE MOUND, Orlando runs out to Miguel. B164
Don't worry about it. You're all good.
Just relax. Throw strikes. They can't
touch you. Just throw strikes.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 83.
Miguel nods. Orlando goes back behind the plate.
Miguel glances to the runner at first, then delivers...
Orlando nods, encouraging. Throws the ball back.
Miguel takes another deep breath. He whispers a prayer to
himself, grabs the ball in his spike curve grip, and...
...his next pitch is ROCKED to deep left field.
Miguel immediately lowers his head, unable to watch. We HOLD on
his anguished reaction, as the hitter circles the bases.
STU shakes his head in disappointment.
C164 FROM THE BULLPEN, Salvador watches, concerned. C164
D164 FROM THE STANDS, Earl and Helen clap for encouragement. D164
E164 MIGUEL does his best to shake it off, but he keeps muttering toE164
himself, which makes him look crazy.
Another deep breath. Another pitch...
This one almost finds the batter's head, as he falls to the dirt
to avoid contact. It's on.
You're outta here!
The batter leaps to his feet, walks out toward the mound,
pointing his finger at Miguel, PISSED.
Miguel opens his arms, inviting a fight. Orlando steps between
Fucking Puerto Rican piece of shit!
Fuck you, cocksucker!
Both benches clear, as players rush out onto the field to
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 84.
Miguel and the batter continue jawing at each other, while the
other players swirl around them, creating little sub-conflicts
of their own. It's a mess.
The sound FADES TO SILENCE and the image blends to SLO-MO again.
There's something poetic about a bunch of men in child-like
baseball uniforms, screaming at each other in silence.
Miguel looks around, perhaps recognizing this for himself...
...he calmly walks off the field, leaving the chaos behind.
165 INT. SWING CLUBHOUSE SHOWERS - A LITTLE LATER 165
Miguel showers alone.
166 INT. HIGGINS KITCHEN - NIGHT 166
Miguel eats a late dinner at the table. Earl sits at the other
end, sipping some tea, while Helen does dishes at the sink.
The mood is uncomfortably tense. Nobody says a word, until
Miguel musters up the courage.
Helen turns off the faucet, turns around. Earl methodically
sets down his mug, stands up, and crosses to Miguel. Puts his
arm around his shoulder, wherein...
...Miguel breaks down, hugs Earl around the waist, his face
pressed against his stomach. He's crying. Hold.
167 INT. BRIDGETOWN SWING BALL PARK - COACHES' OFFICE - EVENING 167
Stu addresses Miguel before the game. Though his words are
encouraging, his tone is detached, cold. Miguel senses this,
You played with your emotions, and your
emotions got the best of you. Happens
to everyone. It's just a nasty part of
the game. Nobody likes to admit it,
but it is. The true test of our
character as athletes... is how we come
back. It's up to you.
Stu notices Hardy, the Swing mascot, pass by his office door.
Hardy! Don't wander off; I gotta talk
to you about that accountant...
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 85.
168 EXT. BRIDGETOWN SWING BALLPARK - NIGHT 168
Miguel sits out in the bullpen with the other relievers, while
Stu continues in V.O.
So, um, anyway, I'm bumping Sal into
your slot in the rotation. I'd like to
see how you handle a relief spot.
A168 ON THE MOUND, Salvador fires in the opening pitch. A168
B168 IN THE RADIO BOOTH, Jack Jefferies does his play by play. B168
Moving up from relief, Torres makes his
third start for the Swing. I tell ya,
this lanky kid from the Dominican
Republic has surprised us all with his
unique delivery and precision. Reminds
me of a young Pedro Martinez... Hey
there Bees fans, don't forget, closing
night is approaching fast and tickets
are selling out. So pick yours up at
the box office today...
169 IN THE BULLPEN 169
Similar to an earlier sequence of JUMPCUTS on Miguel reacting to
the game from the dugout, we now HOLD on Miguel, solemn and
detached, from the bullpen.
NOTE: the frame for the following images contains the first 3-4
rows of FANS seated behind the bullpen, so we can also use them
to gauge what might be happening on the field.
PLAY 1: Miguel, the FOUR RELIEVERS, and the fans clap for a
PLAY 2: The fans jump to their feet as a ground ball passes
through frame, followed by an outfielder in hot pursuit.
PLAY 3: A reliever warms up in the foreground. Miguel stares
ahead, deadpan, while the others chat and spit chewing tobacco.
PLAY 4: A new reliever warms up, then runs out onto the field,
leaving only two others with Miguel.
PLAY 5: Miguel stares ahead, while the crowd does the "Chicken
Dance" behind him.
PLAY 6: The fans leap to their feet in applause. The two
relievers high-five. Miguel CLAPS, going through the motions.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 86.
PLAY 7: Miguel chews and spits sunflower seed shells as the
fans sing along to "Take Me Out to the Ball Game."
PLAY 8: Another reliever runs out onto the field, leaving only
Miguel and one other guy.
PLAY 9: Miguel is finally warming up, ready to enter the game,
...the fans leap to their feet, CHEERING victoriously. Game
over. The only other reliever grabs his jacket, and heads out
onto the field.
As the players and fans head for the exits, Miguel remains on
the bullpen mound for a beat. He nods to himself, oddly at
peace with the moment. Miguel steps off the mound and we PAN
with him, as he crosses frame, and makes the long walk to the
170 INT. MIGUEL'S BEDROOM - LATE AFTERNOON 170
Miguel grabs a slip of paper from his nightstand. His large
duffel bag is packed full in front of him. On the wall, his NYC
calendar is turned to AUGUST.
He goes to the phone. Dials...
After a long beat he hangs up.
171 INT. HIGGINS FARMHOUSE - KITCHEN - EVENING 171
Helen walks in to find Miguel washing the dishes in the sink.
Oh, honey, you don't have to do that.
(his English better than
No problem. I want to help.
Well, thank you, Miguel.
Helen grabs a dish towel. They do the dishes together in
silence. After a beat...
Thank you, Helen.
Helen smiles, pats Miguel on the back. HOLD.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 87.
172 EXT. BRIDGETOWN SWING BALL PARK - EARLY MORNING 172
Earl drops off Miguel near the team bus, as players and coaches
load their gear in, and get on.
Miguel cautiously approaches the bus, sees Salvador,
I forgot something in the clubhouse.
I'll be right back.
As Miguel turns, Salvador grabs his bag, which is still on his
Here, I'll load your bag.
Miguel grips his bag tighter and the two of them lock eyes.
Salvador senses his intensity, releases the bag. Miguel backs
away with Salvador looking on.
Where's he going?
AT THE CLUBHOUSE ENTRANCE Miguel turns back to the bus, sees...
...Salvador eyeing him from the open bus window. Sal raises his
hand, very subtly waves goodbye.
Miguel continues on his way.
173 EXT. BURLINGTON BUS DEPOT - MINUTES LATER 173
A local taxi pulls up, and Miguel hops out with his duffel bag.
174 INT. BUS - DAY 174
Miguel steps on, moves past the other PASSENGERS, finds an empty
seat towards the back. He sits down, catches his breath, and
whispers a prayer to himself. When he's done, he looks across
the aisle, where an OLD LADY is staring at him.
He shoots her a cautious smile.
175 INT. MOVING BUS - DAY/EVENING 175
Miguel stares, wide-eyed, out the window at the shifting
landscapes, daytime into evening...
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 88.
--bridges and rivers.
He sleeps against the window, his Clemente book open on his lap.
176 INT. MOVING BUS- LATER 176
From the New Jersey turnpike, Miguel sees the approaching
Manhattan skyline in the early morning light. He sits up
straight, looks attentively at the city emerging in the
177 INT. TIMES SQUARE SUBWAY STATION 177
Morning COMMUTERS push past Miguel, as he looks around, lost in
the cacophony of the swirling rush hour environment.
He locates a giant subway map on the wall, the various subway
lines reaching into the outer boroughs like colorful tentacles.
His eyes scan the map, and we follow his finger up the green
line's numbered stations, stopping on 161ST/YANKEE STADIUM.
AT THE TURNSTILES. Miguel inches forward, observes people
passing through after swiping cards. He notices a line behind a
Metrocard vending machine nearby.
178 AT THE MACHINE - SECONDS LATER 178
Fortunately, there is a Spanish option, so after a few touches
and BEEPS, he's got his card.
179 AT THE TURNSTILE 179
He swipes the card, tries to pass through, but the turnstile
won't budge. He studies the message: "SWIPE AGAIN AT THIS
TURNSTILE", but can't make sense of it. Miguel tries again,
this time very slowly, but still can't get through.
An IMPATIENT COMMUTER behind him SIGHS loudly.
Miguel steps out of the way, let's the commuter pass.
After the commuter goes through, Miguel tries again.
180 INT. SUBWAY PEDESTRIAN TUNNEL 180
As Miguel strolls through the underground hallway that connects
the various Times Square subway lines, he sees...
--a TEAM OF BREAKDANCERS performing for tips.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 89.
--billboard ads for movies, music, dermatologists, Mets
--a HOMELESS MAN passed out on the ground.
--a WOMAN selling a random collection of objects: VHS tapes,
batteries, a used blender...
181 INT. SUBWAY TRAIN - MOVING 181
Miguel observes other passengers, when the train emerges above
ground. He stands, looks out the window as the train passes
182 EXT. 167TH ST. - THE BRONX - DAY 182
Miguel descends from the elevated subway station, glances
around. The atmosphere is immediately more familiar, as PEOPLE
walk by speaking Spanish; MERENGUE blasts out of an open
apartment window; Dominican flags hang from others.
Miguel paces up the block, looking for something. He smiles
when he finds...
...El Restaurante Caribe. A HELP WANTED sign (in English and
Spanish) hangs in the window.
183 INT. EL RESTAURANTE CARIBE - DAY 183
Miguel takes a seat at the counter, smiles to the waitress,
REYNA (cute, 20-something, Dominican).
(in Spanish, of course)
Talk to me.
Is Jorge working today?
A bus boy, RAFAEL, overhears as he passes by.
Jorge, the ball player!
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 90.
Oh. The ballpayer... He left about two
I think he drives a car now.
Do you have a phone number for him?
His old one isn't working.
Reyna shrugs, looks to Rafael.
(shaking his head)
Sorry... But I think he was staying
down at concourse village on 156th.
He still comes in to eat sometimes.
Miguel nods, looks off, a little anxious.
184 EXT. 156TH STREET - DAY 184
Miguel glances up at the dozens of high-rise apartment buildings
in every direction.
He walks away, discouraged.
185 OMITTED 185
186 EXT. (ANOTHER) STREET - DAY 186
Miguel continues to follow the elevated subway tracks, which
lead him straight to...
...YANKEE STADIUM. He looks up at the park's grand exterior
with wonder. Approaches to get a closer look.
The Stadium is closed today, so Miguel struggles to catch a
glimpse of the field through an iron fence. He grabs hold of
the bars, attempts to climb just enough to get a better view,
You wanta see the inside, you gotta buy
a ticket, pal.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 91.
187 EXT. SOUND VIEW PARK - LATE AFTERNOON 187
With his duffel on his lap, Miguel sits on a bench overlooking a
a community baseball field, where local KIDS play for fun. He
stares off blankly, preoccupied with other things.
A188 EXT. PARADISE HOTEL - DUSK A188
Miguel stands before the old transient hotel.
188 INT. PARADISE HOTEL LOBBY 188
Miguel sidesteps a nodding JUNKY on his way to the front desk,
approaches the toothless Russian clerk, NIKOLAI (late 50s).
For how long?
I don't know.
Two hundred a week. First week in
As Miguel tries to piece together what was just said, he notices
a rack of condoms beside a set of long distance calling cards on
the front desk. The name of the calling card is ALÓ MAMÁ!
Two hundred now.
Miguel reaches for the calling card.
This also please.
189 INT. PARADISE HOTEL HALLWAY - MINUTES LATER 189
As Miguel looks for his room, he passes another room's doorway,
where a middle-aged JOHN gives a woman a kiss goodbye. Miguel
makes brief eye contact with the woman, RAQUEL. She smiles.
190 INT. PARADISE HOTEL ROOM 190
Miguel turns on the light to find a small bed in the corner of
the room. There's also a desk with a phone. Miguel puts down
his duffel and sits at the desk. He examines the calling card
for a beat, then goes to the window, looks out. Hold.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 92.
191 EXT. 163RD STREET - NEXT DAY 191
Miguel strolls by various stores and restaurants. He passes
outside a WOODEN CABINET STORE, where 5-6 Dominican men, ranging
in age from 20 to 50 years old, make furniture in the shop. He
stops for a beat, watching the men work.
192 INT. CABINET STORE DISPLAY ROOM 192
Miguel approaches a man, OSVALDO (late 50s), who works at his
desk on the computer.
You speak Spanish?
Is this your place?
Yeah. Can I help you?
Miguel glances around at the various wooden furniture items for
I like your work.
Thanks. What are you looking for?
Oh, no, I mean... I don't know. I was
passing by and thought maybe you might
need some help. I know how to make
--I don't have any work right now.
Right. Okay, thanks for your time.
Osvaldo gets back to his computer, but Miguel lingers...
Do you know any other places like this
where I might find work?
Have you checked the classifieds?
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 93.
193 INT. EL CARIBE RESTAURANT - LATE AFTERNOON 193
Miguel sips soda from a straw as he leafs through the
classifieds in a Spanish-language daily.
INSERT: Various employment ads, requiring experience, fluency in
English, working papers, etc.
Miguel glances up, stares out the window. Rafael, the busboy
from the other day, wipes down the table next to Miguel.
If you leave a number, I'll give it to
him next time he comes through.
194 INT. PARADISE HOTEL BEDROOM - EVENING 194
Miguel braces himself, dials on the phone, waits... His NYC
calendar (turned to the Statue of Liberty month) hangs on the
wall in the background.
A194 We INTERCUT between Miguel and his home in the Dominican A194
Miguel! My God, where are you?
Carmen snatches the phone from Erica, who stays close, trying to
Miguelito, what is going on? Frank
called last night. Where are you?
Oh, my God! What are you doing in New
York? I don't understand. Your team
is looking for you.
I can't play anymore.
Are you hurt? What does that mean, you
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 94.
No. I'm fine. It just--
We've been working for this your whole
life, Miguelito. Oh, my God! You're
so close. I don't understand...
Don't worry, mom. I have some money.
We're going to be okay.
You have to go back. Listen, Miguel,
my sweet sugar, call Frank. They'll
take you back.
I can't go back--
Did I raise you like this? Did I raise
you to give up?
I didn't give up. I'm starting
something new here.
What? What are you starting?
I have to go mom. The card's almost
out of minutes.
Where are you even staying? Miguel--
Don't worry. I'm staying with a
friend. I have a new job. It's all
good. I'm sending money tomorrow.
I love you. I'm sorry.
Miguel hangs up, stares off.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 95.
195 INT. WESTERN UNION - MORNING 195
CAMERA TRACKS past a long line of IMMIGRANTS in all shapes and
sizes, preparing to wire money back home, wherever that is.
MINUTES LATER. Miguel looks at the few bills in his wallet,
hands two fifties to the TELLER.
196 INT. EL CARIBE RESTAURANT - DAY 196
Miguel leans over the counter, talks to Reyna, the waitress.
Hey, um, I was in here the other day.
Yeah, sure, did you find your guy?
No. I'm actually looking for a job
She smiles, calls over to...
(leans close to Miguel)
Tell him you like his shirt.
Reyna moves away, and Miguel glances over to the approaching
MANAGER. He's wearing an outrageously colorful tropical shirt.
197 INT. EL CARIBE RESTAURANT - KITCHEN 197
CLOSE ON Miguel's hand scraping uneaten food into the trash.
His new co-worker, RAFAEL (the same bus boy from Miguel's first
visit), shows Miguel how to use the dishwasher.
And then put it in here with the
Miguel puts the plate in the large dish washer.
When it's full, set to scrub, and there
Miguel stares at the machine as it HUMS and WHIRS.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 96.
198 INT. EL CARIBE RESTAURANT - NIGHT 198
Miguel and Rafael sit next to each other in the back, eating
Do you know anybody with a room for
Rafael shakes his head, no.
But I'll ask around, let you know if I
hear of anything.
Miguel nods, gets back to his food.
You and Jorge used to play baseball
Yeah, you like baseball?
It's okay. I'd rather watch soccer
though... Have you found him yet?
He'll be through sooner or later.
How long have you worked here?
Do you have family here?
No. My wife and kids are still in
My family's in the Dominican.
Rafael nods, and they continue eating.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 97.
199 INT. PARADISE HOTEL ROOM - NIGHT 199
Loud, overexaggerated SEX SOUNDS filter in from another room,
while Miguel reads the last page of the Clemente biography.
After a beat, he closes the book, listens.
200 INT. WOODEN CABINET SHOP - EARLY EVENING 200
Two EMPLOYEES say goodbye to Osvaldo as Miguel enters the shop.
Miguel approaches Osvaldo, who is sanding a table.
Hi, um, do you remember me?
Yeah, but, sorry, I still don't have a
job for you.
That's okay. I already found one. I'm
actually just trying to make a coffee
table, and I'd like to buy some wood
I don't really sell raw materials...
I just moved here, you know, and I
don't have a space to work. Do you
think I could do some work for you,
help you clean up or whatever you need,
in exchange for using your shop? You
don't have to pay me.
Osvaldo sizes up Miguel's unusual request.
Somebody paying you for the table?
No. It's a gift for my mom. Something
I like to do.
How old are you?
Who taught you to make tables?
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 98.
My dad. He was a carpenter in San
Is that where you're from?
I grew up in Santiago. What are you
doing in New York?
I came to work. I used to play
Osvaldo nods, understanding.
The whole world plays baseball. My
son's sixteen. Won't touch a piece of
wood that's not a bat. I never cared
for the game, myself. Too slow.
Your mom still in San Pedro?
Yeah. With my sister and brother.
So, you're telling me that you want to
make a table for your mom, then mail it
back to her in the Dominican?
Miguel nods. Osvaldo smiles, finally warming up.
What's your name?
They shake hands.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 99.
201 INT. EL CARIBE RESTAURANT - DAY 201
Miguel performs his new work routine: mopping floors, washing
dishes, accepting deliveries. He seems to be getting the hang
202 INT. EL CARIBE RESTAURANT - LATER 202
As Miguel eats from a heaping plate of beef and mashed yucca, he
watches Reyna chatting up a customer from behind the counter.
203 EXT. STREET - NIGHT 203
Miguel passes a Western Union, looks inside, but keeps going.
204 INT. CABINET STORE - NIGHT 204
Miguel finishes work on his table for the night, covers it with
a blanket, and proceeds to sweep up. Osvaldo works at his
desktop computer from across the room. They don't speak.
205 INT. PARADISE HOTEL ROOM - NIGHT 205
Miguel sits at the desk, talks into the phone.
Hello... Is Sofia at home?... Yeah,
it's Miguel again... Can you tell
her... Just tell her I called...
Miguel hangs up.
206 INT. LAUNDROMAT - NIGHT 206
Miguel leans against the counter, staring at his clothes
twirling in the dryer, when...
...he notices Raquel unloading her clothes a few dryers away.
She pushes her laundry cart to the opposite side of his counter,
Miguel stares at her out of the corner of his eye, taking
special notice of her diverse underwear collection ranging from
lacy thongs to the standard cotton variety. She catches him
(with a mysterious Eastern-
You just going to watch or you going to
help me out?
Caught off guard, Miguel smiles awkwardly, turns away. After a
few beats, a flying sock lands on his shoulder.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 100.
He turns back to find several random items of her clothing on
the counter in front of him. She smiles, keeps folding.
Miguel sorts through the items: socks, underwear, t-shirts. He
looks back to her, then begins folding, as the laundromat's
machinery reverberates around them. They exchange brief grins.
Where you from?
Miguel nods, and they continue folding in silence. Hold.
207 INT. CABINET STORE - NIGHT 207
Miguel carves wood, while Osvaldo looks on from his desk. They
exchange glances, until Miguel breaks the silence.
So you never liked baseball? Not even
as a kid?
It's okay. Sometimes during the
playoffs I'll watch a game or two.
Who's your favorite player?
I don't know enough to have a favorite.
C'mon, everybody has a favorite player:
Juan Marichal, Pedro Martinez?
Fine. Jose Canseco.
Jose Canseco!? That's the best you can
Okay, what about you?
(pushing his buttons)
Never heard of him.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 101.
What's so special about Clemente?
I read this book where he said
something like, "If you have the
opportunity to help someone and don't,
then you're wasting your life."
And he was a carpenter too.
Get out of here.
For real. He used to make furniture
during the off season.
Are you fucking with me? Cause you
know I can google this fool right now.
The internet. Don't worry, I'll teach
A beat. Miguel continues his work.
When did you get released?
They didn't release me. I left a few
days before the season ended.
You left? When was this?
About two weeks ago.
Holy shit. Where are you staying?
Oh, you know, with a friend. But if
you know somebody who needs a
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 102.
Osvaldo nods and they continue working.
(after a beat)
Why'd you leave?
Miguel hesitates, unsure where to begin. Osvaldo senses his
discomfort with the question.
Do you have any family here?
(shaking his head)
But I'm okay... I have some money
saved, a couple friends. I'll go home
to visit soon.
Osvaldo doesn't quite buy it, but nods anyway.
Do you know a place called Ukraine?
208 INT. PARADISE HOTEL LOBBY - NIGHT 208
Miguel attempts to slip past Nikolai, who is currently checking
in another GUEST, but...
Hey! You owe money. Full week!
I know. I have tomorrow. No problem.
Yes, problem. You pay tomorrow or you
have big problem.
Miguel continues up the stairs.
209 INT. MIGUEL'S BEDROOM - LATER 209
Unable to sleep, Miguel lies in bed, staring at the ceiling,
when he overhears a commotion from across the hall.
After a beat, he hears a door open and SLAM SHUT.
He goes to the door, listens close. It's quiet, until...
KNOCK KNOCK KNOCK
Miguel flinches. Then slowly cracks open the door to find...
...Raquel standing before him with a small leather duffel bag.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 103.
(handing him the bag)
Love, keep this in your room for me.
Just a few hours. Til morning. I'll
She forces the bag into his hands, kisses him on the cheek, and
retreats into her own room.
Miguel closes the door, still holding the bag. He sets it on
his bed, stares at it. After a few beats, he grabs it, stuffs
it under the bed, out of sight.
He sits down at the desk, stares at the bed, when he hears
SHOUTING from the hall. Again, he goes to the door, listens.
Another MAN POUNDS on Raquel's door, SCREAMING in Ukrainian,
while Nikolai YELLS at the man in English, though Miguel can't
make out exactly what's going on. The shouting intensifies
until a SCUFFLE breaks out. A woman SCREAMS. Miguel reaches
for the door handle, but stops himself.
He steps into his BATHROOM, shuts the door, sits on the toilet.
The muffled SHOUTING continues. Miguel waits.
210 INT. MIGUEL'S ROOM - LATER 210
Now quiet, Miguel stares at the mysterious bag on his bed, then
heads for the door with his packed duffel over his shoulder. He
puts his ear to the door, then exits, leaving the other bag
211 INT. PARADISE HOTEL HALLWAY 211
Miguel tip-toes down the hall. He stops in front of Raquel's
room, leans down, and slides his room key under her door.
Continues down the hall.
212 EXT. STREET - PHONE BOOTH - EARLY MORNING 212
Miguel dials his calling card number into the phone, listens...
Frank... It's Miguel.
We hold on Miguel, though we can hear Frank's muffled voice
through the receiver.
Jesus, Miguel, what the hell happened?
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 104.
Sorry for calling late. I'm in New
I heard. You're making me look bad.
What are you doing there?
I got a job, but I don't know if I'm
going to stay...
Where you gonna go? The season's
over... Your visa's expired.
I know, but I thought maybe I could...
A beat, as Miguel drifts off.
I can talk to Alvarez... But I don't
know. Nobody's happy about this.
Miguel bites his lip. A police SIREN flies by.
I know. Sorry.
Miguel hangs up the phone.
213 EXT. ALL NIGHT CAFE - NIGHT 213
Through the window, we see Miguel seated at a corner table. He
stares out at the early morning traffic.
214 EXT. ALL NIGHT CAFE - SAME ANGLE - EARLY MORNING - DAY 214
Miguel is asleep at the same table. A WAITRESS comes by with a
fresh pot of coffee, wakes him up. He declines another cup.
215 INT. EL CARIBE RESTAURANT - DAY 215
Exhausted, Miguel goes through his usual work routine: bussing
tables, washing dishes, stocking the kitchen...
216 INT. CABINET STORE - NIGHT 216
Miguel approaches Osvaldo with his duffel bag. He looks a mess.
Osvaldo glances up from his work.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 105.
Miguel doesn't respond. Osvaldo notices his packed bag and worn
expression. Both men stare at each other for a long beat.
I don't know where to go.
Osvaldo approaches, takes the duffel from Miguel's shoulder.
217 EXT. STREET - OUTSIDE EL CARIBE RESTAURANT - DAY 217
Now wearing a Fall coat, Miguel crosses the street on his way to
...he's startled by a loud car horn coming from a black livery
cab parked at the curb.
(giving the finger)
Fuck you, man!
Miguel keeps walking, but stops upon hearing...
Fuck you too, bro!
Miguel turns to find Jorge, leaping out of his car, and running
at him. They hug.
What happened to you?
Me? What happened to you?
I been looking for you for weeks.
I know. Rafi said you took my old job.
Welcome to New York!
218 INT. EL CARIBE RESTAURANT - DAY 218
Jorge eats at the counter, while Miguel stands on the opposite
side, in his apron.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 106.
I called the Higgins to give my new
number, but they said you split. I
couldn't believe it, man, I had no
Things got a little ugly after you
We all go through slumps you know.
It wasn't a slump.
What was it then?
I don't know, but I wasn't gonna wait
around for them to throw me out.
Jorge looks at Miguel for a tense beat.
I'm just saying...
Whatever, man, you wouldn't be saying
that shit if you made it.
Miguel smiles, shrugs.
(from across the room)
Sugar! Rafi needs you in the kitchen!
They call you Sugar?
On his way to the kitchen...
What can I say? The name sticks.
As Miguel slips past Reyna on his way to the kitchen, they
exchange flirtatious smiles.
219 INT. UPTOWN CLUB - NIGHT 219
Merengue fuels the packed club tonight, as the mostly Latino
crowd gets down on the dance floor.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 107.
AT THE BAR. Miguel, Reyna, Jorge, and his girlfriend, MONICA,
drink beers, enjoying the party.
They got all kinds in this league, bro.
Like fat cats in their forties, kids
like you and me, Dominicans, Puerto
Ricans, even some white boys. I got
this fifty year old catcher on my team,
used to play for the Dodgers. Can't
run for shit, but he's out there every
week. Belly out to here. My man can
still go deep though... You ever hear
from that kid, Brad?
Reyna leans close to Miguel, says something in his ear, and he
smiles, as she leads him out onto...
220 THE DANCEFLOOR 220
...where they carve up some fast and fierce moves. Miguel grins
wide, having a great time. At this point the sound FADES LOW
and the image blends to SLOW-MOTION, their bodies gliding
through the frame, soothing and peaceful. Hold, as Jeff
Buckley's "Hallelujah" FADES UP and carries over...
221 EXT. EL CARIBE RESTAURANT - MORNING 221
A DELIVERY MAN puts boxes on a ramp, which go from his truck
222 INT. EL CARIBE RESTAURANT BASEMENT 222
Miguel takes the boxes off the ramp.
223 INT. EL CARIBE RESTAURANT - DAY 223
Miguel and Reyna eat together, smiling.
224 INT. WESTERN UNION - NIGHT 224
Miguel hands the teller two fifty dollar bills.
225 EXT. STREET - NIGHT 225
Miguel floats down the street among a packed block of Bronx
pedestrians. He blends in now, just another face in the crowd.
226 INT. WOODEN CABINET SHOP - NIGHT 226
Osvaldo helps Miguel work on his coffee table.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 108.
227 INT. WOODEN CABINET SHOP - LATER THAT NIGHT 227
Osvaldo teaches Miguel how to use the internet.
228 INT. OSVALDO'S APARTMENT - DINING ROOM 228
Miguel, Osvaldo, and his wife, ESTELLA, eat dinner at the table.
The music continues under the following scene...
I did some research and I got a new
favorite player now.
Vic Power. You know him?
Miguel shakes his head, no.
You ought to. Greatest Puerto Rican
first baseman ever. But that's not why
he's my favorite player... Back when he
first arrived, 1951, 52, he was playing
in the minors. Little Rock, Arkansas.
So the story goes, one day before a
game, Vic stops into this diner for
lunch. Hadn't been here long, so he
knew very little English. Didn't even
notice the "whites only" sign hanging
in the window. And Vic was Black. I
looked him up on Google. I mean Black
like you. So he sits down at the
counter and the little waitress comes
up to big Vic and says, "I'm sorry, we
don't serve colored people."
Osvaldo pauses for dramatic effect, as Miguel and Estella
eagerly await what comes next.
So he leans close to the waitress,
tells her in his best English, "That's
okay, I don't eat colored people."
After a beat, Estella laughs, but Miguel is unsure. Osvaldo
does his best to explain the joke in Spanish.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 109.
229 INT. OSVALDO'S APARTMENT - SPARE ROOM - NIGHT 229
A229 We INTERCUT between Miguel and Carmen in the DOMINICAN REPUBLIC.229
She sits at her table in the same old house. (We can see
through the window that the new one is still unfinished).
I got the photos you sent, but you'll
have to send more.
Okay, mom, but you know it would be a
lot easier if you opened an email
Email? I don't even know how to use
I'm making a new table for you. It's
going to be real nice.
I'm sure I'll love it. Thank you.
She's good. Got a job at the factory.
Just part-time, though, so she can keep
up with school.
Miguel removes the phone from his ear for a beat.
He's pitching now. You should see him,
Miguel, got an arm like his brother.
Yeah, but can he throw a knuckle curve?
Carmen laughs. After a beat...
I miss you, mom. But, I'm working
hard. I'll be home soon. Give
everyone a hug for me.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 110.
I will, Sugar. I love you.
I love you, too.
She nods, hangs up, and looks over to...
...LITTLE LUIS, watching her from across the room.
230 EXT. ROBERTO CLEMENTE FIELD - BRONX - DAY 230
CLOSE ON a Dominican flag being waved by a TODDLER. A WIDER
ANGLE reveals him in the packed bleachers with a diverse CROWD
of FANS and FRIENDS: Dominicans, Puerto Ricans, Anglos...
The mood is festive. A VENDOR sells mangos on sticks. Merengue
MUSIC blasts from a portable stereo in the stands. FANS drink
Presidente beer out of bottles.
231 ON THE FIELD 231
Uniformed PLAYERS of all ages, races, shapes, and sizes warm up
before the game (though the majority are Dominican).
Jorge introduces Miguel (also in uniform) to the other players.
Caballo! This is Miguel from San
The new guy. You ready to pitch?
I think so.
It's been a while, no?
Don't worry; he's ready.
JUMP CUT TO:
Jorge introduces Miguel to...
Felipe! Meet Miguel. They call him
What's up, Sugar?
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 111.
Felipe played for the Dodgers Triple-A
team. Hit a dinger off Pedro once.
JUMP CUT TO:
I played for the Yankees.
JUMP CUT TO:
JUMP CUT TO:
JUMP CUT TO:
Me too! Bridgetown.
I was there in 96. I lived on a farm.
With the Higgins!
Miguel smiles big, just as the UMPIRE calls out...
Vamos! Let's play ball!
232 ON THE MOUND - MINUTES LATER 232
We TILT UP from his cleats to reveal Miguel looking in for the
sign from his catcher. He nods. And delivers.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 112.
The ball is SMACKED toward third, where Jorge makes an awkward
lunge for the ball, manages to stop it with his foot. By the
time he gets his hand on it, the RUNNER has made it to first.
The fans and some of the players laugh at Jorge's ugly mistake.
OLD MAN HECKLER
(from the stands)
This ain't soccer! You can use your
Just like old times.
But Jorge shrugs and laughs it off. No pressure here. It's
only a game.
Miguel buckles down, delivers a monster fastball.
He gets the ball back, looks to the stands, and sees...
...Monica waving to Jorge at third.
Miguel's new friend, Osvaldo, is also there with Estella.
Miguel smiles to them.
Miguel fires in the next pitch, even faster, and the batter
swings straight through it.
He gets the ball back, lowers his head and whispers a prayer to
himself. Looks back to the runner on second. Comes to the set
...floats in a vicious, swooping, knuckle curve, that causes the
batter to flinch out of the way, before breaking back over the
All the fans and players in attendance go NUTS over the awesome
pitch, as we follow Miguel off the field to a mini-standing
ovation. He tips his hat to the crowd. Just like old times.
Official Shooting Script as of 10/22/07 113.
233 IN THE DUGOUT 233
Miguel takes a seat as TEAMMATES pass through the frame and pat
him on the back.
The SOUND FADES LOW as we start a SLOW ZOOM IN on Miguel. He
takes in the moment as we get closer, and his smile gives way to
a beat of quiet introspection. Hold.
He looks out across the field. CLAPS for encouragement.