Documentary film producer/director Jon Leonoudakis (The Wrecking Crew!) joins Tim Hanlon to discuss Season Three of his digital video series The Sweet Spot: A Treasury of Baseball Stories – devoted to the plight of women in the pursuit of playing America’s pastime. Over this season’s nine episodes, Shutout! The Battle American Women Wage to Play Baseball tackles the tortuous journey of women in baseball from multiple angles – including notable attempts at professional play over the last century, such as:
- The All-American Girls Professional Baseball League – launched in wartime 1943 to keep interest in the sport alive while enlisted male players served overseas, the AAGPBL continued well into the early 1950s with a spirited blend of competitive moxie and girl-next-door femininity that delighted hundreds of thousands of fans across the Midwest and inspired a landmark 1992 film (A League of Their Own) that cemented its legacy generations later;
- The Colorado Silver Bullets – formed in 1994 in the wake of the success of the movie, the Coors Brewing Company-sponsored Silver Bullets barnstormed the US for four seasons under the managerial tutelage of National Baseball Hall of Famer Phil Niekro – holding its own against dozens of men's minor league, semi-pro and all-star amateur teams; AND
- Ladies League Baseball – the short-lived 1997 West Coast-based women’s pro circuit (and its even shorter-lived 1998 successor, the Ladies Professional Baseball League) that sought to build on the Silver Bullets’ pioneering success, but failed to generate sustained enthusiasm at the gate.