Editor’s Note: This story is featured on an episode of Inside Appalachia focused on the impact of baseball throughout the region. To listen to this episode and others, subscribe to the podcast.
It’s an early August evening on Libertore Field at White Park in Morgantown. The orange prison jumpsuit jerseys of Chico’s Bail Bonds are impossible to miss -- and so is our play. But, that’s not necessarily a compliment.
On this evening, the team loses in typical Chico fashion.
The team name, of course, comes from the 1976 film The Bad News Bears, in which a down-and-out and cheap beer-swigging Walter Matthau coaches a group of rag-tag Little Leaguers and tries to whip them into shape.