Baseball has been Americas pastime for well over 100 years, since 1845. You've probably heard of all the variants, from Little League and College, to the professional Minor and Major Leagues. I've only ever been to one baseball game, and that was the Dodgers, over in Los Angeles. I sat for what seemed hours, then decided to leave about 20 minutes before the end, mostly bored to be honest. The friend I was with stayed on and she said it all kicked off just after I left, and it was very exciting! Typical!
There are many different "plays" within a game, and to be honest I was a bit lost. One is an action where a player can steal a base. Here's the explanation of that, as written on the Boston Redsocks website:
In baseball, a runner is charged, and the fielders involved are credited, with a time caught stealing when the runner attempts to advance or lead off from one base to another without the ball being batted and then is tagged out by a fielder while making the attempt. A time caught stealing cannot be charged to a batter-runner, a runner who is still advancing as the direct result of reaching base.
Do you understand?
No, me neither.
Despite that severe lack of knowledge of the game, this week, here in Scotland, I have been assisting on a short film with a baseball theme called Stealing Second, by two friends, Dave Barras and Scott Mackay.
I asked the two writer directors what the film was about:
Well, it’s about lots of things, but the main character is
a small time crook and thug called Eli Marshall,
who doesn’t really want to be a small time crook at all.
By a quirk of fate he becomes trapped in a baseball trial
with the Wildcats, as the police are searching for him.
I know, I know, weird. It works though.
So over 3 days, with the ever reliable, vastly changeable Scottish weather, a hardy bunch of filmmakers gathered at several locations in Edinburgh and Livingston, and brought this short to life.
My main responsibility was to achieve several shots using a drone, but as is the way in all independent filmmaking, I "pitched" in (see what I did there?) to help in all manner of roles. At times that was as a runner or production assistant, or a driver, and at one point, second unit camera.
Thankfully for the drone it was dry and bright, if not a little windy, but we captured the shots needed. Despite Hurricane Irma delivering the dregs of her storm on occasion, the team pulled it off, amidst having a lot of fun. The buzz on set was exciting and many new friendships were kindled.
Now the film is in post production, destined for film festivals, and serves as a proof of concept for a feature-film version. If you see this playing in a festival near you make sure you go and support the team.
Oh, and you don't need to know a thing about baseball.