Little House on the Prairie

Season 2 Episode 4

In The Big Inning

Aired Wednesday 12:00 AM Oct 01, 1975 on NBC

Episode Fan Reviews (4)

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out of 10
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  • The Walnut Grove Baseball Team badly need a victory - and a much better pitcher than Mr. Oleson. Enter Mr. Mumford who has quite an arm on him!

    Walnut Grove are sick of losing the baseball competition every year and one thing they desperately need is someone who can pitch better than Nels Oleson. Along comes Mr. Mumford who shows his stuff while throwing stones at a chicken hawke.

    The who town turns out to watch the match against neighbouring Sleepy Eye but the game and the result (and therefore the episode) is very predictable. Mr. Mumford makes a fantastic pitcher and the visiting team don't know what hit them because they certainly didn't hit much!

    Mrs. Mumford, very much against gambling, is happy when she learns that wagered money will go to a worthy cause so all is well that ends well. Quite dull but Mr. Edwards, as usual, was very amusing, showing once against the excellent comedic talents of Victor French.
  • The town of Walnut Grove is discouraged about their prospects of winning the annual baseball game against Sleepy Eye this year after losing badly to them the previous year until Charles discovers what a killer arm his friend Jebediah Mumford possesses.

    An extremely funny episode, one of the funniest in the whole series. It actually isn't too emotional, whereas so many other Little House episodes are. It's also one of the few Little House episodes that portray a sporting event right in Walnut Grove. It's plumb full of excitement and humor. One doesn't have to attend a local baseball game or even watch one on TV, because this episode is equal to all the excitement that one of those games offer! And it's actually pretty nice not having an episode that is over-emotional, an episode that is basically humorous and exciting! A wonderful episode it is.
  • Boy, the towns sure take this game seriously!

    Although admittedly this wasn't my favorite episode, I still don't think it was "bad." I'm not sure I've ever seen a bad Little House episode. I'm such a fan of the show and have been since it first came out.

    Given how many parents these days get so "nuts" about their kids' games, it seems fitting to show that competition in sports is not a new thing. I imagine the cavemen probably got into it, too!

    Walnut Grove wanted to finally win a game against the bigger, "better" team, just once, but the odds were against them...that is until they accidentally discovered one of their own townsmen was a great pitcher. The problem came in, however, when the wife learned the game was being bet on. Her religion strictly prevented her from allowing this, so she pulls her husband from the game. Not only was money on the line, but pride. The men are devastated, but the pitcher (a meek, "obedient" husband) was not going to stand up to his wife. If she said he couldn't pitch, he couldn't pitch. The women in town decide it would be okay to wager on the game as long as the winnings went to the church, so the wife finally relents and the game goes on with her husband pitching. It was a cute enough episode, a little different, but that's okay. They can't all be serious. A lighthearted version every so often is a nice break.
  • The first of a number of "sports" episodes on the series.

    Walnut Grove and Sleepy Eye square off in base ball, with nothing really of consequence (well, pride and money) hanging in the balance.

    I suppose this episode probably only appeals to sports fans, and I am a huge fan of sports history so I liked it. Nevertheless, when I last watched it I realized again just how much time (over 30 minutes) is devoted to the "big game" itself. There are some errors, some of which I've submitted to the episode guide here at, some of the notable ones are the base ball gloves and Doc Baker talking about college baseball in his youth (just wrong historically, given his age). Another error is his "pin-stripe" uniform, pin-stripes are post turn-of-the-century phenomena, not common until the late 1910s.

    There is some fun here, the traditional abhorence of gambling which almost sidelines the new pitcher and the sense of betting on the outcome that both intrigues and repels the town of Walnut Grove at the same time. And the game itself is fairly rowdy and amusing, though this story is probably still best for fans of the game themselves.
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