One Day at a Time (1975–1984): Season 7, Episode 20 - Hardball - full transcript

Alex gets Max to coach his baseball team. Trouble arises when Max won't let Alex play.

♪ This is it ♪ This is it

♪ This is life, the one you get

♪ So go and have
a ball ♪ This is it

♪ This is it

♪ Straight ahead
and rest assured

♪ You can't be sure at all

♪ So while you're
here enjoy the view

♪ Keep on doing what you do

♪ So hold on tight
we'll muddle through

♪ One day at a time
♪ One day at a time

♪ So up on your feet
♪ So up on your feet

♪ Somewhere
there's music playing

♪ Don't you worry none

♪ We'll just take
it like it comes

♪ One day at a time
♪ One day at a time

♪ One day at a
time ♪ Da da da da

♪ One day at a time
♪ One day at a time

♪ One day at a
time ♪ Da da da da

♪ One day at a time

(door closes)

- Good afternoon.

- Sure, easy for you to say.

- Oh, what's the matter?

- Oh, it's nothing.

I like to leave my
problems on the field.

(audience laughing)
- Yeah, okay.

If you don't want
to talk about it.

- Maybe it's not good to
keep this stuff bottled up.

(audience laughing)

Okay, coach just got fired.

- The team fired Mr. Hollis?

- No, IBM fired Mr. Hollis.

He's out in Omaha
looking for a new job.

(audience laughing)

- Can't one of the
other parents do it?

- Well, we thought we'd might
get Stevie Weinstein's Dad.

- The rabbi?

- Mhmm, but he
won't work Saturdays.

(audience laughing)

- Oh well, Alex, I wish I
could suggest someone

but if you tried 'em all.

- Well, not exactly all.

- Well, who did you have in...

(audience laughing)

I'm not too sure I like
the look in your voice.

- We're desperate.

- Desperate, you're
asking mothers.

- Even more desperate than that.

We're asking you.

(audience laughing)

You know what I mean.

- Yeah, I do, Alex.

Well, you see I'm strictly
a one sport woman.

(audience laughing)

Wrist wrestling is my life.

(audience laughing)

Alex, I'm just not qualified.

- Who is?

Mr. Hollis thought that
a pitcher's ERA meant

that girls could play.

(audience laughing)

- Huh, he didn't.

- Really.

- Doesn't it?

(audience laughing)

- Hey, Ms. Romano the
guys are counting on you.

- I'm sorry, Alex.

I just can't.

I'm all involved in this
ad convention downtown.

- I understand.

- Oh, honey.

Don't worry.

It'll all work out.

- Now I'm the team's last hope.

They're counting on me
to come up with somebody.


- Barbara.

(audience laughing)

Barbara, what has bats,
balls, bases and Yogi Berra?

- Baseball.

- You got it, coach!

- Huh?

- Now, darling, you
better snap her up quick

before the Yankees get her.

- See you later!

- [Barbara] Bye!

- Bye.
- Bye.

- What was that all about?

- Barbara, how'd you like
to coach our baseball team?

- You gotta be kidding.

I don't know the first
thing about baseball.

- Coach, it's your chance
to meet a lot of cute guys.

(audience laughing)

- Baseball, huh?

Oh, Alex, I don't know.

What would I wear?

I'd look so scruffy.

(audience laughing)

- We'll put a mirror
in the dugout.

(audience laughs)

- Alex, I'd love to help.

Really, I don't think
I'm cut out for it.

I mean I'd split my nails
hitting all those funguses.

(audience laughing)

- Fungos.

- Yeah, well, I'd split
my nails hitting those too.

- I'm depressed.

I need junk food, quick.

(audience laughing)

(doorbell rings)

Will you get that Barbara?

- Yes.

Max, hi!

- Hi, how's my
favorite sister-in-law?

- I'm your only sister-in-law.

- Oh yeah.
- Yeah.

- (laughs) How ya doing?

- Hi, what are you doing here?

- Well, I'm up here to instruct

the flight attendant course
for a couple of weeks.

- Oh, that's great.

- Yeah, can I borrow a couch?

- Sure, where's Julie?

- Oh, she's in the
middle of her exams.

So she thought it'd
be a pretty good idea

to stay pretty
close to home base.

- Home base?

Home base, Max!

Do you know anything
about baseball?

- Hey Alex.
- How ya doing?

- Know baseball?

I speak it.

(audience laughing)

- What does all that mean?

- That means either hit and run

or your jockey
shorts are too tight.

(audience laughing)

- Oh Max, you'd be the perfect
guy to coach Alex's team.

You staying for dinner?

- Yeah, I'd love to.

And no way.

I coached my kid
brother's team for two years.

It's too rough a job.

- Yeah, what's rough about it?

- Well, first of all, you
gotta set a good example.

Then you gotta run
around tying shoelaces,

blowing noses,
springing for hot dogs.

- Max, we're sponsored
by Herbie's Fish Market.

We get all the
sardines we can eat.

(audience laughing)

- Besides, they're 13 year olds.

- That's the same
age their parents are.

You ever see them at a game?

Enough to give you heartburn.

- Nah, forget it.

Nothing's gone right
this season anyway.

- What do you mean?

- Well, the last coach we had

stuck me way out in right field.

He had his own kid playing
where I wanted to play,

first base.

- Hey, first base.

- Yeah.
- That's my position.

- Yeah?
- Yeah.

- I wish I could play it better.

- Well, if I was coach
I'd show ya everything

there is to know
about first base.

Holding a runner, guarding
the line, charging bunts.

- Then you'll do it?

- Wait a minute,
wait a minute, I said if.

I'm only gonna be
here a couple a weeks.

- That's more than any
other coach has lasted.

(audience laughing)

Please Max.

- Julie would do it.

(audience laughing)

- When's the next game?

- In 30 minutes.

- Great.

(audience laughing)

- 30 minutes?

- I got a live one.

- [Alex's Team] Alright!


- (laughs) Okay.

Okay, introducing the new coach

of the Herbie's Fish Market
Sharks, Mr. Max Horvath!

(team cheering)

- Hey everyone.

- So, you're the
new Skipper, huh?

Got some stuff here
from our previous coach.

- Oh, thank you.

- Mr. Horvath, I'm Frankie,
equipment manager

and official spokesman
of the Sharks.

I wanna welcome you to the team.

- Thank you...

- I know that a half hour from
now when the ump hollers,

"Play ball," when the old
hickory meets the horsehide

we're gonna play like
our backs are to the wall

and there's no tomorrow

because we're the kinda
team that comes to play.

We give 110%

every time

'cause we know
that playing a tie

is like kissing your sister

and the other team puts
their pants on one leg at a time.

Our motto is,

"The game is never over
until the last man is out."

(audience laughing)

- That's terrific kid.

You really got a way
with other people's words.

(audience laughing)

- Thanks.

Just telling it like it is.

Did I say it's a game

of inches...
- Of inches?

Yeah, right.

- Max you're gonna
have to excuse Frankie.

He wants to be a sportscaster.

He thinks Howard Cosell
is the greatest person

who ever lived.

- That makes two of 'em.

(audience laughing)

- C'mon, we better
get to the game.

- Oh, just a second
everybody before you go,

I'd like to say a few words.

Look, baseball is a game.

And games are made to have fun

which is the reason we're
going out there today.

Now, as coach, I'd like
to stress fundamentals.

We're going to practice
hitting, throwing and fielding.

Alright, now.

Let's go out there
and get those Lemons!

- Lions.

(audience laughing)

- Lions?

- Lions.

- Lemon... (laughing)
Get those Lions!

(team cheering)

- Yeah.

- You gotta work
on your penmanship.

- I'm sorry.

(audience laughing)

- Hi.

- Hi, how'd you do?

- Great!

- Yeah, you won?

- We lost, 6 to 2.

- That's great?

- Uh huh.

I got to play first base

and it was really fun.

Except when I caught
the ball with my face

instead of my glove.

(audience laughing)

- Oh, are you alright?
- Yeah.

Having fun is what
the game's all about.

Right Skip?

- Yeah, right.

- Well, did you get any hits?

- Well, not really.

I got a hold a one pretty good

but I pulled it foul into
the convalescent home.

(audience laughing)

See you two later.

The team parents have a rule.

Any kid who plays over four
innings has to take a shower.

(audience laughing)

- Well, I'd say he seems pretty
happy considering you lost.

- Barbara, we got
a real problem here.

Alex Handris should
not be playing first base.

- Well, what should
he be playing?

- Soccer.

(audience laughing)

- He's not good, huh?

- Not good?

He caught his
spikes in his socks.

(audience laughing)

- Oh well, at least he had fun

and that's part of the game.

You said so yourself.

- Barbara, there's an old
expression in the airlines.

You can have all
the fun in the world.

Doesn't mean a
thing unless you score.

(audience laughing)

When I was single
I used to say that.

It's an old expression.
- Right, right.

Look, Max, (laughs)
you're the coach.

Teach him.

Give him some advice.

- Like what,

to play first base
wearing a catcher's mask?

(audience laughing)

- Come on, it's just one game.

- One game?

The season is only eight.

And let me tell you something.

The rest of the kids on
this team are pretty terrific.

I think we could
win the pennant.

- Aren't you taking this
a little too seriously?

- Too seriously?

Hey, winning the pennant is
what this country is all about.

And after we win the pennant,

there's no telling
how far we could go!

And that's why Alex Handris
has to move to right field.

- No!

You promised him he
could play first base.

- Barbara, every player is
suited to a particular position.

Alex Handris
reeks of right field.

(audience laughing)

- Wanted to see me, Skip?

- Oh yeah, have a seat, Alex.

(Max sighing)

(audience laughing)


Alec... (coughs) Alex.

(audience laughing)

The game of baseball
is like the game of life.

There's a right
place for everybody.

All you gotta do is find it.

- I know.

That's what our last
coach Mr. Hollis said.

- Oh really?

- Yeah, right now he's in Omaha.

(audience laughing)

- Oh.

Alex, I wanna put
this a gently as I can.

- Max, I know I
booted a few today.

But I'm gonna improve.

The main thing is I had
great fun playing first

and I wanna...
- Alright listen...

- Thank you for that.
- Don't mention it.

(audience laughing)

You wanna cup a coffee?

(audience laughing)

- No thanks, I'm
trying to cut down.

(audience laughing)

- Well, I'm gonna have one.

- Go ahead.
- Okay.

(Max laughs then sighs)

Uh, let me get
right to the point.

How tall are you?

- Eh, about 4'11".

- Well, (laughs) see?

4 foot, let me tell
you something.

Take a look at all the
great first basemen

in the history of
the major leagues.

You got Lou Gehrig,

Moose Skowron,

The Big Klu Ted
Kluszewski, Stretch McCovey,

not one of them was 4'11".

(audience laughing)

- You played first and
I'm almost as tall as you.

- That probably is what
kept me outta the big leagues.

Anyway, let me
tell you something.

Playing first base
is not the real fun.

You know what the real fun is?

- Real fun?

You mean you're
gonna let me pitch?

(audience laughing)

- No no no no.

The real fun is not
what position you play.

It's winning.

- Oh yeah.

I hear winning is great.

(audience laughing)

- Winning is great.

And the best chance the
Sharks have of winning

is with you playing right field.

- Right field?

- Alex, Alex,

right field is one of the
most important positions

in the game.

You've heard of
Reggie Jackson, right?

- Of course.

- Where do you
think he hangs out?

- The bank.

(audience laughing)

- Alex.
- Max.

It's okay.

Next Saturday, Alex
Handris will be in right field.

- Well, maybe not next Saturday.

You see, I think they're
throwing a right hander at us.

- So?

- So, I think I
wanna platoon you.

I only wanna play you
against left-handed pitching.

- Maybe we shouldn't
talk any longer.

It's getting worse.

Now I'm on the bench.

- Wait a second, wait a second!

No team ever won a pennant
without a strong bench.

- Pennant?

We aren't gonna win the pennant.

- What are you talking about,

we're not gonna win the pennant?

Hey, I bet you every
dime I own we do.

- Really?
- Yeah.

- Gosh, a pennant.

- (laughs) Yeah.

- That'd be great.

And if I've got to
ride the bench to do it,

then that's the way it is.

- That's the spirit.

That's terrific.

I'm sitting over here worried
about how to tell you all this

and you took it
like a big leaguer.

That's great.

- Thanks Max, I'll see ya later.

I'm gonna go hang
out with my friends.

- Okay, you have a good time.

- Yeah, I will.

(door closes shut)

(glove thuds)

(audience applauding)

- Oh hi, you still here?

- Very funny.

Is Alex ready for the game?

- Oh yeah, little
trooper that he is.

- Hey, lighten up, huh?

I know I did the right thing.

- I hope so.

(Max sighs)

- I'm all set for the game.

Got my batting helmet,
my glove and my cushion.

(audience laughing)

- (laughs) A sense
of humor, I like that.

I always say the team that
laughs together, wins together.

- Max, do you think there's a
chance I'll get to play today?

- Well, you never know
when we're gonna need

a good pinch hitter.

And if we do,

you gotta remember
everything I taught you, alright?


You choke up on the bat.

You stand deep in
the batter's box, alright?

Okay, legs apart,
knees slightly bent.

Elbows up.

Alright and when
the pitch comes in,

you stride forward.

Keep your shoulders level.

Eye on the ball, head
down, follow through.

Just like that.

Real smooth.

(clicks tongue) Just like that.

(clicks tongue) Oh!

- Max?

- [Max] Oh!

- [Barbara] Max,
are you alright?

(audience laughing)

- I'm fine.

Eh, c'mon.

We gotta pennant to win.

- You want this?
- Yeah.

Oh, too heavy.

(audience laughing)


- Max, something's
wrong with your back.

You can't go to that game.

You should be lying down.

- [Max] Am I at the door yet?

- No!

Max, you have to lie down.

- I'm not gonna lie down

this afternoon.
- Yes you are.

- We got a game.

I'm sorry, here we go...
- Max.

You're lying down.
- Alex, here we go.

- No, Max.

(audience laughing)

- Yes, I realize it's hard to
find a doctor on Saturday.

Unfortunately, my back
thought it was Tuesday.

(audience laughing)
(phone dings)


(audience laughing)

Okay, hey!


No pulling.
- No pulling.

- Just helping.

- Easy now, Max.

Easy, easy.

- Okay, here we go.

Let me down.

- Going down.

(Max groans in pain)

- (sighs) Thanks.


Now men, Toffler,
(audience laughing)

I don't want you to
worry about a thing

out there today, okay?

True, I will not be
out there in person,

but thanks to
Schneider's CB rig,

I will be following
the play-by-play

and coaching from my
main man Frankie here.

- Spoken like a true champion.

When the going gets
tough, the tough get going.

(audience laughing)

- Yeah, well we
better getting going

or we're not gonna
have time to warm up.

- Alright, just a second,
before you all go.

Let me just say a few things.

Now, let's go over the signs.

This means?

- [Team] Steal.

- Good, and this means?

- [Team] Hit and run.

- (laughs) And this means?

- [Team] Zip up your fly.

- Good!

(audience laughing)


- Oh, my Dad says I
have to leave at 3:30

for my french horn lesson.

- What?

(audience laughing)


You're the best
long ball hitter I got!

- Can't you put in a sub?

- Oh that's a good idea.

Fleming, you take Toffler's
french horn lesson for her.

(audience laughing)

Alright, now let's go out there

and murder those Bracken
Funeral Home Cougars!

(team cheering)

- Hope you feel better, Max.

- Thanks Alex.

- Yeah?

- Come here big guy.

Listen, you're my eyes
and ears out there today.

I'm really counting on you.

- Okay and don't worry.

The team wants to
win this one for ya,

in case ya die.

(audience laughing)

- Breaker, breaker!

Breaker, breaker,

this is Super Coach
calling Yankee Clipper.

Yankee Clipper, do you read me?

- [Frankie On CB]
You forgot to say over!

Over. (CB emits static)

(audience laughing)

- This is not Smokey
and the Bandit.

Just give me the play-by-play.

Now what's the score?

- [Frankie On CB]
Well it's a beautiful day,

here at the ol' ballpark.

(audience laughing)

- Did we score?

- Will you please hold it down?

I'm tryin' to find
another orthopedist.

- Forget the orthopedist.

I need a cardiologist.

- Yes, yes.

This is an emergency.

Okay, I'll ask.

How do you intend to pay?

- The doctor?

Through the nose.

(audience laughing)

C'mon Frankie, talk to me.

What's the score here?

- [Frankie On CB]
17 to 16, Sharks,

here in the bottom of the fifth.

(CB emits static)

- 17-16?

We got a run!

We're in the lead!

(cheers) We're gonna do it!

We're gonna do it!

- Okay, thank you.

- Oh!

(Max yells in pain)
(audience laughing)

- Max, hold on.

They're going to try and reach
Dr. Warwick on his beeper.

- (sighs) Fat chance.

- C'mon, just find out if
Alex is playing for me.

- [Frankie On CB]
Coming up for the Cougars,

here in the bottom of the
fifth is Spiros Koropolis.

His Daddy runs that Greek
restaurant over on 12th Street.

I highly recommend the moussaka.

(audience laughing)

- Hey Frankie,
I'll moussaka you.

- Is Alex playing?

- [Frankie On CB] Alex
Handris, a bright young prospect.

He's had his
troubles this season

but he's really hustling
out there this afternoon.

- Good for Alex.

- [Frankie On CB] He's
working his way down

to the stands now with
Gatorade for all the regulars.

(audience laughing)

- Would you forget about Alex?

That Koropolis is a pull hitter.

He hits everything to
the left side, alright?

I want the Ted Williams shift.

Everybody to the
left side of the field.

- [Frankie On CB]
There's a hot smash

to the right side
of the infield.

First basemen
Reynolds scoops it up.

He races to the bag.

- Hurry up Reynolds!

- [Frankie On CB] And
there's a terrible collision.

The umpire signals
out to retire the side.

Both men are
lying on the ground.

Now they're getting up.


I've got good news.

Neither of them is crying.

(audience laughing)

- Thank goodness.

- [Frankie On CB] Wait a minute.

Reynolds is limping.

He wants to stay in the game

but his Daddy is taking him out.

(CB emits static)

- Oh no.

Oh no!

There's only one inning left.

Who am I gonna put in at first?

- I have a suggestion.

- I'm the coach, okay.

- C'mon Max, put Alex at first.

It'll make him feel good.

- Hey look,

there are a lot more
important things in the world

than feeling good.

And let me tell you
something else...

(Max yelps in pain)


(grunts) Listen Barbara,
you know you can't play

the first string on everything.

Alex is gonna have to
learn that sooner or later.

- Thank you Mr. Philosophy.

- Frankie!

Frankie, mayday, mayday!

What's going on out there...
- You know, Max,

baseball is not
to learn about life.

It's to have fun.

- What?

You saying this
isn't fun (laughs).

Frankie, I'll kill ya!

(audience laughing)

- Look Max, I know
you think Alex is taking

this whole business about
being benched like a man

but after you told him he cried.

- He did?

- Yes, he just didn't
want you to know.

He was afraid of
letting you down.

- [Frankie On CB] Breaker,
breaker, Super Coach

this is Yankee Clipper, over.

(CB emits static)

- C'mon Frankie, where ya been?

- [Frankie On CB] I was
having an anxiety attack.

I had to have a snow cone, fast.

Oh, there's a swing and a miss.

Strike three.

There's two outs now
here at the top of the sixth.

Back to you Super Coach, over.

(CB emits static)

- Just a second Frankie.

- C'mon.

- Alright Frankie,
when we take the field

in the bottom
of the last inning,

(sighs) I want you to put
Alex Handris at first base.

- [Frankie On CB] Are
you out of your mind?

(audience laughing)

- I'm the coach.

You play him.

- [Frankie On CB] Okay,

but you're gonna have to
answer to Herbie's Fish Market

for this one.

There's a high pop-up.

The catcher trips on his mask,

holds onto the ball
and the top of the sixth.

Sharks still lead 17 to 16.

(CB radio emits static)

- Still 17 to 16,
real pitchers duel.

(telephone rings)
(audience laughing)

- Hello?

Yes, hi Dr. Warwick.

I'm calling on behalf of Coach
Horvath, I mean Max Horvath.

Yes, he's got a bad back.

I'm not sure what's wrong.

Oh you're where?

He's at the baseball game.

His son's team is
playing the Sharks.

Yeah, that's right, Max Horvath
is the coach of the Sharks.

What do you mean
you won't treat him?

(audience laughing)

Doctor, it's just
a baseball game.



(audience laughing)


He hung up.

I don't believe it.

- Frankie, Frankie big guy.

Talk to me, what's
going on out there?

- [Frankie On CB]
The tie run is at third.

The winning run, second.

- Oh no.
- Oh no.

- [Frankie On CB] It's the
bottom of the last inning,

just a half inning to go and
this game will be history.

(CB emits static)
- Three more outs

and we're on our
way to the pennant.

C'mon Sharks!

- [Frankie On CB]
Here's the pitch.

It's a bunt down
the first base line.

The runner on third
is breaking for home.

First basemen, Alex
Handris, charges the ball.

- C'mon Alex!

- [Frankie On CB]
He scoops it up!

No, he kicks it.

(audience laughing)

- He kicks it?

- [Frankie On CB]
It's a beautiful spiral.

Right over the catcher's head

and through a hole
in the backstop.

(audience laughing)

Here comes one run over.

Two runs over.

And the Sharks lose.

(CB Radio emits static)

(audience laughing)

- I think I'll go
to my room now.

(audience laughing)

- Hi Max.

- Hey Alex.

Some game, huh?

- (laughs) Yeah.

Some game.

- Hey, c'mon, c'mon.

I know how you feel.

Look, let me tell you something.

It takes nine guys
to win a game.

It also takes nine
guys to lose a game.

- No it doesn't.

It only takes one
man to lose a game.

You were the one.

(audience laughing)

- What are you talkin' about?

- Max you put me at first.

That was dumb.

I didn't belong there.

- Who said that?

- You did.

- Oh.

- It's really true.

Winning is everything.

You were right.

- Maybe the problem
is that I didn't really care

whether you won or lost.

I think all I really cared
about is that I won or lost.

- You're not going to get
me that Bad News Bears stuff

about playing for fun, are you?

- (laughs) Yeah, I think I am.

(laughs) But still, there's
gotta be a way to win

and have fun too.

- Well, with me
kicking the ball around,

we're not gonna win.

(audience laughing)

I know I'm not going
to have any fun.

- Look Alex, I'm gonna
be here a few more days.

And when my back gets better,

you and I are gonna
work on fundamentals.

You're gonna
make a lot of errors.

But you're gonna
learn the position.

- Yeah, right field.

- First base.

- You mean, you're
gonna let me play first?

- Yep.

- Boy, I get to play
first base next week

against the Panthers.

- Well, maybe not the Panthers.

(audience laughing)

Just kidding.

(Alex and Max both laugh)


(audience laughing)

(audience applauding)

(horn version of theme song)