Some of the best baseball films can give the thrill and excitement of a playoff game due to their compelling story and powerful acting.

Best baseball films

From comedies to dramas, high-budget to low-budget films, baseball has been a huge part of cinema for more than 100 years. These baseball films produced some of the most memorable and iconic scenes in cinema history.

Here are the greatest baseball films of all time…

10. The Natural (1984)

IMDB: 7.5/10
Rotten Tomatoes: 82%

The Natural is an inspiring movie about a second chance and unwavering talent. When you got it, you simply got it no matter the age.

    

The film tells the story of Roy Hobbs (Robert Redford), a middle-aged rookie hitter who was recently signed by the New York Knights. He then took the struggling team from the bottom to the top with his batting skills despite the sixteen-year absence from baseball—which is due to the accident he suffered.

Although somewhat cliche, the message of the movie is that it’s not too late to try again to pursue your dreams.

9. Eight Men Out (1988)

IMDB: 7.2/10
Rotten Tomatoes: 86%

Eight Men Out is a drama film based on the true story of the eight White Sox players who were believed to conspire with gamblers to throw the World Series against the Cincinnati Reds. This is one of the biggest scandals in the history of professional sports and was called the Black Sox Scandal.

The film revolves around the eight players of the Chicago White Sox led by star pitcher, Eddie Cicotte (David Strathairn), who accepted bribes from a gambling syndicate due to financial circumstances. They deliberately played poorly in the World Series which drew suspicion from journalists.

    

This is one of the must-watch MLB films since it tells a story of a significant event in baseball history. It also has an all-star cast of John Cusack, Christopher Lloyd, Charlie Sheen, and D.B. Sweeney.

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8. A League of Their Own (1992)

IMDB: 7.3/10
Rotten Tomatoes: 80%

A League of Their Own is a comedy classic based on the real-life All-American Girls Professional Baseball League back in the World War II era. The women’s league is meant to replace the men since most of them are enlisted in the war.

It tells a story of two sisters, Dottie Hinson (Geena Davis) and Kit Keller (Lori Petty), who were scouted to play for the league and on the same team, Rockford Peaches. The team is coached by the often-drunk and former major-leaguer Jimmy Dugan (Tom Hanks).

Apart from the all-star cast of Tom Hanks, Geena Davis, Lori Petty, and Madonna, the story highlights feminism, camaraderie, rivalry, and baseball.

7. The Sandlot (1993)

IMDB: 7.8/10
Rotten Tomatoes: 64%

When it comes to family baseball movies, The Sandlot definitely comes first to mind. It’s a warm, funny, and light-hearted movie suitable for all ages.

This iconic film is about Scottie Smalls (Thomas Guiry), a new kid in town who tries to make friends with the neighborhood through baseball. He met Benjamin Franklin Rodriguez (Mike Vitar) who teaches him baseball so that he can finally fit in. Together, they went on thrilling adventures.

The film is more than just winning and being competitive. Rather, it’s about overcoming your fears and just having fun with your friends through the game of baseball. Surely, this is reminiscent of most of us in our adolescent years wherein we try something new and make new friends. It’s simply nostalgic.

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6. Moneyball (2011)

IMDB: 7.6/10
Rotten Tomatoes: 94%

Moneyball is a true story based on the Oakland Athletics, the league’s lowest-salaried team back then, and their sudden turnaround in the 2002 MLB season. They started with a record of 11 losses in a row but went on a 20-game winning streak right after.

This film revolves around Billy Beane (Brad Pitt), the general manager of the A’s, who faces a tough task in turning his team around after a bad start. Given a tight budget, he resorted to the theories of Peter Brand (Jonah Hill) and started looking for undervalued players.

Moneyball is more than just baseball—it’s about business, math, and intuition. This is one of the best baseball movies on Netflix. It’s also available on Prime.

5. 42 (2013)

IMDB: 7.5/10
Rotten Tomatoes: 81%

This biopic is one of the greatest MLB movies of all time since it’s a significant turning point in MLB history. It highlights the breaking of the color barrier in the league for the first time ever.

42 is all about the life of Jackie Robinson (Chadwick Boseman), the first African-American to play in the league. He was signed by Branch Ricky (Harrison Ford) to play for the Brooklyn Dodgers in 1947. The signing raised some eyebrows since baseball was considered a “white game” back then.

Chadwick Boseman was legendary here. It was this movie where he rose to stardom.

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4. Major League (1989)

IMDB: 7.2/10
Rotten Tomatoes: 83%

When it comes to sports comedy, nothing beats Major League. This classic is a major source of laughs and tears.

The film is centered around a dysfunctional Cleveland Indians team. Rachel Phelps (Margaret Whitton) assembled a team full of incompetent players so they can become the worst team in the league and relocate to Miami. However, Ricky Vaughn (Charlie Sheen), Jake Taylor (Tom Berenger), Willy Mays Hayes (Wesley Snipes), and others had other ideas.

Despite the success of Major League, the sequels didn’t live up to the expectations. But forget those two, Major League is one of the best baseball movies ever.

3. Field of Dreams (1989)

IMDB: 7.5/10
Rotten Tomatoes: 87%

Field of Dreams is a magical film about redemption, hope, and family. It perfectly mixes fantasy and baseball into one compelling story.

The story revolves around Ray Kinsella (Kevin Costner), a farmer, who builds a baseball diamond in the middle of his cornfield after hearing a voice. Afterward, the ghosts of great players such as Joe “Shoeless” Jackson (Ray Liotta) started to appear on his field.

Despite the fairytale-like story, Field of Dreams has a deeper meaning which transcends more than baseball.

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2. Bull Durham (1988)

IMDB: 7.1/10
Rotten Tomatoes: 97%

This film encompasses romance, comedy, drama, and baseball into one—making it one of the best baseball movies ever. Sports Illustrated even ranked this number one as the greatest sports movie of all time.

Bull Durham’s story is centered around Crash Davis (Kevin Costner), a veteran catcher who is sent down to train Nuke Laloosh (Tim Robbins), a rookie pitcher, to become a major league talent. The story also involves the love triangle between the two baseball players and Annie Savoy (Susan Sarandon).

Wow, Kevin Costner again? He surely knows how to take a leading role in these baseball movies. The director, Ron Shelton, definitely hit a home run with his movie debut.

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1. Bad News Bears (1976)

IMDB: 7.3/10
Rotten Tomatoes: 97%

Watch Bad News Bears 

This comedy classic is arguably the best baseball movie of all time. It captures the competitiveness of youth sports, the beautiful game of baseball, the complexity of the characters, and the comedic acting from the cast. This makes it one of the best family baseball movies to watch.

Bad News Bears is a story about a youth baseball team coached by Morris Buttermaker (Walter Matthau), an alcoholic and a former minor-league coach. He coaches a team full of hardheaded and obnoxious kids to compete in a youth baseball league.

Everything is perfect in this movie. It delivers a fun and entertaining story while putting up great acting performances from the youngsters in the movie.

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