Inspired by a true story
Story and Screenplay by Steven Scaffidi
WGA Registration # 1676034
Martin “Scoops” Scaffidi was an exceptional player for arguably the best high school baseball team ever assembled. The 1936 Jays were so good in fact that they would win the state title four years straight and all starting nine players would go on to the big leagues. “Scoops” played shortstop and he was the heart and soul of that 1936 team. He would make his mark in baseball history that stands even to this day because he never missed a game, never missed a play, never committed an error.
“Scoops” had a knack for being the best at nearly everything he did. He was the leading scorer on his basketball team. He sat first chair in the horn section of the school orchestra. And he would win medal after medal on the track team where he was an All-State champion. But as good as “Scoops” was in sports, he would make his biggest mark in life when he least expected it.
Legend has it that when “Scoops” was drafted fresh out of high school by the Indians that he was headed for baseball immortality. Expectations were extremely high when the young man, not even eighteen years old, stepped up to the plate for his very first at bat in the big show. Just like he did in high school, “Scoops” was not the least bit intimidated and smacked the very first pitch into deep center field.
Running like the wind, he rounded first and slid hard into second beating the throw for a solid double. It seemed as though “Scoops” picked up right where he left off only to realize the excruciating pain coming from his right leg. When the opposing team’s second baseman looked down at his fallen adversary he nearly passed out as he saw a piece of bone protruding from the rookie’s leg. “Scoops” would never step up to the plate again and his dream of playing professional baseball was over.
Even though “Scoop’s” would never play in the big leagues again, he would continue his winning ways in life as he did in sports and he became the #1 tire salesman in America despite the fact that he couldn’t change one. Life was good but there was one thing about this very special guy that would become his Achilles heel and eventually his downfall...“Scoops” never met a person he didn’t like and he couldn’t say no to anyone who asked for help.
Eventually, the man with the golden touch and the big heart lost it all. When the moving trucks pulled away from his suburban home one summer afternoon, “Scoops” was broken mentally, physically and even financially. Long gone were the good ole days of easy come - easy go and “Scoops” surly wasn’t the most popular guy in town any more. Nearly everyone he ever knew abandoned him except for his kids, his ex-wife’s parents, his best friend Bubby, and one beautiful widow with baggage of her own.
Life threw “Scoops” a curve ball but he didn’t strike out and his final at bat would be doozy leaving no doubt that he was indeed #1. Now being the 11th of 11 children who was born at 11AM on 11-11, why would possibly the greatest infielder in high school baseball history, who proudly wore the number 11, have it any other way when he took his last breath at 1:11AM?
As droves of people lined up to pay their last respects, everyone would agree that the man who had only 1 at bat in the big leagues, and was #1 at nearly everything he did in life, would forever be #1 when he was buried at 1PM in plot #11 in Greenwood Cemetery.
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