The Simpsons

Homer at the Bat

Season 3, Ep 17, Aired 2/20/92
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  • Episode Description
  • The Springfield Nuclear Power Plant's softball team goes on a season long winning streak thanks to Homer's "Wunderbat." But with the pennant and a $1 million bet on the line Mr. Burns brings in 9 ringers from the professional baseball ranks and a disappointed Homer has to sit the bench.

  • Cast & Crew
  • John Swartzwelder

  • Jim Reardon

  • Jay Kogen

  • Wallace Wolodarsky

  • George Meyer

  • Fan Reviews (23)
  • Perfect

    By jmbsonic555, Oct 19, 2011

  • Doesn't get better than this

    By oceanic6, Jun 02, 2009

  • this was a good ep

    By cube2k8, May 15, 2010

  • Talkin' Softball

    By futuramarama, Jan 10, 2010

  • Almost Baseball Legends

    By sh811a, Sep 16, 2009

  • Trivia & Quotes
  • Quotes (20)

    • Lenny: Hit one here Charlie! (Charlie swings his bat, it slips out his hands and goes flying into one of Lenny's shins) Lenny: (in pain) Aah! Aaah!

    • Carl: (to Homer) Yeah, and I got my enchanted jock strap!

    • Rich Man: Would you care to bet a million dollars. Mr. Burns: Oh, if we're going to bet, why not make it interesting? Rich Man: What, a million dollars isn't interesting to you? Mr. Burns: Oh, did you say a million? I'm sorry, my mind was elsewhere. I thought you'd start with a small amount, then we'd slowly bait each other, and . . . well, you know how it goes. Yes, certainly, a million will be fine.

    • Officer Eddie: (reading Steve Sax's license) Well well, Steve Sax, from New York City. Officer Lou: I heard some guy got killed in New York City and they never solved the case. But you wouldn't know anything about that now, would you, Steve? (Lou and Eddie laugh) Steve Sax: But there are hundreds of unsolved murders in New York City. Officer Lou: You don't know when to keep your mouth shut, do you, Saxxy Boy?

    • Umpire: Okay, let's go over the ground rules. You can't leave first until you chug a beer. Any man scoring has to chug a beer. You have to chug a beer at the top of all odd-numbered innings. Oh, and the fourth inning is the beer inning. Wiggum: Hey, we know how to play softball!

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    Notes (3)

    • The DVD commentary tells about how Harry Shearer didn't like this story at all. That was bad for him, because many of his characters (Mr. Burns, Smithers, Lenny) are all playing major roles in the episode.

    • The 'Audio Outtakes' Easter egg on the Season Three DVD has several clips from the baseball players in this episode, including Roger Clemens clucking like a chicken, something with Ken Griffey, Jr., Darryl Strawberry doing several takes of "I got it, I got it!", and Ozzie Smith's son doing his impression of Bart.

    • Blackboard Joke: I will not aim for the head. Couch Gag: In the mad dash for the couch, everyone except Maggie clonks their heads together and collapse unconscious. Maggie gets the couch all to herself.

    Trivia (9)

    • The Springfield Nuclear Power Plant's softball team had a pathetic 2 and 28 win-loss record the previous season.

    • The "Springfield Mystery Spot" sign further adds: "Where logic takes a holiday and all laws of nature are meaningless."

    • Each player's misfortune in act 3: Steve Sax: Arrested by the police. Mike Scioscia: Radiation sickness. Ken Griffey Jr.: Overdose of Nerve Tonic. Ozzie Smith: Vanished off the face of the earth. Wade Boggs: Knocked out by Barney. Jose Canseco: Helping the lady in the house. Roger Clemens: Hypnotized to be a chicken. Don Mattingly: Kicked off when he didn't shave his sideburns. Darryl Strawberry: None, but pulled when the bases were loaded in the 9th inning.

    • Mr. Burns' proposed lineup and the years they played:
      P Mordecai "Three-Finger" Brown (1903-1916)
      C Gabby Street (1904-1931);
      1B Cap Anson (1871-1897; incidentally, one of the most racist players in baseball history)
      2B Napoleon Lajoie (1896-1916)
      SS Honus Wagner (1897-1917; arguably the greatest player who ever lived)
      3B Pie Traynor (1920-1937; also referenced in "Dancin' Homer")
      LF Shoeless Joe Jackson (1908-1920; banned for life in Black Sox Scandal)
      CF Harry Hooper (1909-1925)
      RF Jim Creighton (a superstar before the game got organized. As Smithers notes, he died in 1862 at the age of 21.)

      Mr. Burns' must have been quite the fan from the mid-19th to early 20th century. That team has six Hall-of-Famers (Joe Jackson would have been seven had he not been banned).

    • In one of the baseball games Rich Moore, David Silverman, and Wes Archer can be seen on the bottom row.

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    Allusions (5)

    • Talkin' Baseball The song played over the credits, Talkin' Softball, parodies Talkin' Baseball by Terry Cashman who actually sings the parody.

    • Carl: Yeah I got my magic bat off a piano.
      This is a reference to a true baseball story. On July 15, 1973, Nolan Ryan was in the middle of pitching his second no-hitter of the season for the California Angels, as they were going up against the Detroit Tigers. In the ninth inning with two men on base Tigers slugger Norm Cash, who had struck out his first two times up, decided he was finished trying to hit any of Ryan's pitches, and went to the plate with what he called "an equalizer." A piano leg. Cash brought the leg up to the plate, only to be told it was an illegal object to use at the plate. Cash contested saying "There's no use, I can't hit anything he throws," and demanded he be allowed to try with the leg. Umpire Ron Luciano said that he could have a practice swing against Ryan, and that if he could hit the ball he would allow the foreign object to be used. Ryan pitched; Cash swung, and missed the ball. He was promptly ordered to go get a regulation bat. When Cash returned, he popped a hit into left field which was quickly caught, and the Angels beat the Tigers, 6-0.

    • The Pride of the Yankees
      The montage of going from city to city is a parody of the same scenes in The Pride of the Yankees (1942). This includes Homer pointing to the outfield a la Babe Ruth.

    • The Natural Homer carves his own bat, just like Roy Hobbs in the book, and later 1984 film The Natural. Homer calls his bat, "Wonderbat", while Roy names his "Wonderboy". The other reference to the film is the team being hypnotized by a shrink before the game.

    • Casey at the Bat The episode title of this episode is a parody of Ernest L. Thayer's poem "Casey at the Bat," in which the star of Mudville's baseball team blows a last-minute at-bat.

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