‘Pitch’ 1×08 Review: ‘Unstoppable Forces and Immovable Objects’

While it’s weird to think of Pitch already approaching its season finale after only eight episodes, it’s that time of year. Story-lines are wrapping up, the end is in sight, and it’s time for epic plot twists.

Which is exactly what Pitch delivered in its eighth episode. Mike made his decision, and it’s not one any of us saw coming. Will came back, answering the question of what the hell happened to him after Ginny fired him as her manager. And Ginny got a little bit more character development, as always.

Let’s go over the good, the bad and the confusing in Pitch‘s eighth episode, Unstoppable Forces and Immovable Objects.

Will is alive!

I must admit, I was a little worried for awhile there. I mean, we hadn’t seen him in a long time, and we know what happened to Bill Baker.

But Will is back and as adorable as ever! Also, he’s as incompetent as ever, as he’s clearly having trouble with the sports bar chain he’s trying to start up. While Evelyn is 100% on board and ready to help, Amelia is clearly skeptical of his plan, as she mentions that sports bars are notoriously difficult to start.

But here’s the catch: Will is Ginny’s brother, which automatically gives him an edge. His sister is pretty much the most famous baseball player in the world right now, maybe even the most famous athlete, which gives her both money and publicity. She can support this business until Will manages to get it going, and she can send customers Will’s way. Essentially, Will is banking off his sister’s fame to start a business that he clearly isn’t cut out to manage.

We get a glimpse of the rough start he’s already had in the flashbacks to the pilot, which is a weird use of the timeline that I wasn’t particularly fond of. We see Will come to Ginny’s game visibly beat up, explaining to Amelia that he missed a few payments. Amelia offers him a cheque to take care of it, because Will is Ginny’s brother and Amelia doesn’t want her client to be worried.

It’s clear that there’s more to this than Will is letting on. The kid has big ideas, but I don’t trust him to pull them off. At this point, he’s asked both Amelia and Ginny for money, and doesn’t seem to have anything to show for it. The kid is lucky his sister is so famous.

Kangaroo Court

I really don’t like it when Mike and Ginny fight, because they’re such a good team and they’re so much better together than apart. And they’ve been fighting a lot lately.

In this episode, Mike was mad at his entire team. Maybe it’s frustration at the way the season is going, or maybe he’s just going through a really tough time and is taking it out on his friends. Either way, he was particularly nasty to Ginny.

Episode 8 saw him and Blip hold a session of Kangaroo Court, as they addressed silly complaints about teammates’ behavior and judged them on it. Things get heated, though, when they judge Ginny for an in-game action and she defended herself with passion.

For some reason, that hits a nerve with Mike. He blows up, explaining that he’s sick of everything being about Ginny, sick of her stealing his spotlight and never being able to do anything wrong in the eyes of management and media. It draws a weird parallel to last episode’s situation with Livan, and one that I don’t think is entirely unjustified. Ginny can’t do anything to control her fame, though I do wish she was a little more understanding of Mike’s situation (saying he just has to work harder is a little insensitive), but it is something that her teammates have to deal with.

Outdoor sports are weird

Is this something that baseball teams do? Just… pause the game until the rain subsides? So you can sit around waiting for hours, or have the game postponed? I’m understanding that correctly, right? It makes perfect sense, but I must say this is the first Pitch episode that has made me feel truly clueless about baseball.

It just seems so weird to me that teams could hang around the dressing room all day waiting for the pitch to be safe for them to play on. Wouldn’t you lose focus on the game? Do stadiums not have a dome that they can put up to keep out the rain? I mean, it’s 2016. You’d think we’d have found a way to minimize the impact of weather on our outdoor sports.

Also, I distinctly remember the Senators and Canucks playing the worst “outdoor” hockey game in history on a football field, which ending up being an indoor hockey game when it rained in Vancouver (shocker) and the stadium staff had to put up the dome. Do baseball stadiums not have domes, then? Do they take too long to put up? Where was the dome? I’m pretty sure there should be a dome.

Chicago

Well, I definitely didn’t see that one coming.

I don’t want Mike to leave. I’m worried that this means the show doesn’t expect to get a second season. However, as much as I’m going to miss Mike Lawson on the fictional Padres, this makes sense for his character.

A few episodes ago, I talked about the struggle of reaching the end of your career and realizing that you might never win the thing you’ve played for your whole life. Mike is at a point right now where he can’t fool himself into thinking he’s going to win the World Series with the Padres. They’re barely in the playoff race, definitely out of the conversation for a championship this year, and there’s a good chance this is his last season.

And while winning the World Series with the Padres would be the ultimate ending to his career, he has to decide if he’s going to stay loyal to his team and not win, or switch teams for one last go at it.

If you’ve been following baseball, or if you’ve generally been on the internet lately, you know how this trade to the Cubs is going to work out. And I’m certain Mike’s destination was decided on after the real World Series was won: the writers wanted him to win it all in his last year, so he will.

While it’s always heartbreaking to see a player leave the team they’ve spent their entire career playing for, the Padres owe a lot to Mike. They may not want him to leave, but they want what’s best for him. This is them saying, we gave you everything but a championship. Now go get that.

Random thoughts:

  • Okay, I’ve seen lots of WAGs pictures before, and there were not enough blondes in that scene. WAGs are usually at least 90% blonde.
  • Al has honestly become one of my favorite characters. He was so funny in this episode with his tips about eating kale and staying young.
  • Uh oh, a player has a crush on Ginny. He says he’s distracted by her. This is not good. This is not good at all.
  • It’s so cute that Mike and Blip know so much about Ginny! Also, that off-tune humming is truly horrific.
  • “And I’m not falling in love with her” EXACTLY. I told you Bawson was just a friendship. Now I’ll go pretend I didn’t see the trailer for the next episode.
  • With Mike leaving, the Padres are now in need of a new captain. It has to be Blip, right? I’ll get so emotional if it’s Blip.
  • That could also be an interesting story-line for a future episode, because there’s sure to be conversation about Ginny taking over the captaincy, given that she’s the team’s biggest star and best marketing asset. She’s definitely not ready, but they’ll talk about it.

Pitch airs Thursdays at 9pm on FOX.

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