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By Rob Tobin

GENRE: Comedy, Drama, Family, Sports
LOGLINE: A dyslexic teenage boy with a tough-guy attitude joins a girls’ softball team only to discover that the girls are tougher than he is, that it’s okay to ask for help, and that there is crying in softball.


KELLY is a 13-year-old dyslexic boy who is as brilliant on the baseball field as he is a failure in the classroom. He hides his learning disability by acting up and alienating those around him who see only his misbehavior and not his feelings of inadequacy. Kelly’s best friend was once VICTOR, until Kelly’s physical prowess caused him to shun Victor, who had a clubfoot. Victor still resents Kelly’s betrayal. Kelly’s behavior prompts the school principal to begin proceedings to have Kelly placed in a school for troubled kids. During a baseball game, Kelly’s teammate/rival Victor sets Kelly up by getting Kelly to steal home on a fly ball, getting Kelly kicked off the team. “I just want to win!” he protests. Kelly, hoping to stay in school, asks P.E. teacher JENNIFER about tutoring. Jennifer, who coaches a girls’ softball team, refers him to her pitcher ALEAH who is Victor’s sister. Jennifer soon talks Kelly into joining the team. In his first game, Kelly learns he’s the only boy in the league. The opposing players don’t realize he’s a boy until his helmet flies off while he’s sliding into third. “It’s a boy!” they yell. Kelly yells: “Where?” In the confusion, Kelly steals home. Aleah’s tutoring does not help Kelly, and he finally breaks down in tears, admitting he can’t read. “It’s okay,” Aleah says, “there is crying in softball.” Jennifer convinces Kelly’s estranged father to pay to have Kelly attend a clinic that helps dyslexics learn to read and write. Then Kelly’s father loses his job. Kelly cuts school and softball to do odd jobs, trying to make enough money to pay for his sessions, knowing it is his only chance to stay in school. Leslie, Jennifer and the Red Sox find him mowing a lawn in the pouring rain, so exhausted he can hardly stand, his hands bloodied from the work. As Kelly is helped to the car, the school principal arrives. Seeing Kelly’s determination, he states that he will request that the district pay for Kelly’s sessions. The Red Sox make the playoffs, only to discover that Victor and friends have joined a rival girls’ softball team, the Yankees. The Red Sox and Yankees play the championship game in which Kelly is intentionally spiked by one of the opposing boys. Kelly, injured, takes himself out of the game, rather than endanger the team’s chances of winning--he’s learned what winning really means. Red Sox slugger ERIN grabs a bat. “Hit like a girl,” Kelly yells to her. Erin nods and steps up to the plate. The ball clears the fence. As the Red Sox parade him around the field in the frenzy of victory, Kelly, with the halting uncertainty of someone just learning to read, speaks the words engraved on the winner’s trophy: “Tournament of Champions.”

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