Score! Television’s favorite curmudgeon with a heart of gold is going to be playing one of film’s greatest curmudgeons with a heart of gold. Parks and Recreation star Nick Offerman has been cast as the cantankerous coach in Amazon’s A League of their Own series.
The series, helmed by Abbi Jacobson and Will Graham, is an hourlong live-action drama that focuses on the women of the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League. The show will be inspired by, but not based directly on, the movie with which it shares a name. The young women who make up the Rockford Peaches will still be the focus, but we shouldn’t expect to see the same characters or exact plotlines from Penny Marshall‘s beloved film.
A Cranky Coach
Offerman is set to play the role of Casey “Dove” Porter, who is brought in to coach the Rockford Peaches. Originally a Cubs pitcher, he became famous because his forkball killed a dove in mid-air (hence the nickname) during the middle of a game. Dove was supposed to be the next big thing in baseball, but blew out his arm after only three years. Now he’s trying to recapture lost glory by leading the Peaches to victory.
Dove is pretty similar to Tom Hanks’ Jimmy Dugan, a washed up alcoholic slugger who was supposed to break all of the batting records. The Rockford Peaches are based loosely on the AAGPBL Fort Wayne Daisies, and Dugan is inspired in part by their coach, MLB Hall of Famer Jimmie Foxx.
Offerman is a die-hard Cubs fan and knows exactly how to ride the line between nasty and nice. It’s a dream casting choice on a show that’s already set to have a great cast. Offerman joins Jacobson, Chanté Adams, D’Arcy Carden, Gbemisola Ikumelo, Kelly McCormack, Roberta Colindrez and Priscilla Delgado, as well as recurring guest stars Molly Ephraim, Kate Berlant, and Melanie Field.
A League for Everyone
The team behind the A League of Their Own series wanted to take the themes from the movie and expand upon them further, including one important scene where a Black woman throws a ball back to pitcher Dottie (Geena Davis). The show will dig deeper into themes of prejudice and equality than the movie possibly could have in the early ’90s.
Sources for The Hollywood Reporter say that some surviving members of the AAGPBL served as consultants on the pilot and are expected to stay on for the series. Graham and Jacobson also reached out to both Davis and Marshall (before her passing in December 2018) to get their blessing.
While I’m looking forward to seeing one of my favorite sports movies expanded on, what I want more than anything is Offerman’s delivery of “There’s no crying in baseball!” I guess I’ll have to wait and see when the series eventually makes its debut on Amazon.
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