Scattered Clouds 45° Good Evening
Scattered Clouds 45° Good Evening

Is baseball kosher in Israel?

"Holy Land Hardball," a documentary on the formation of the Israel Baseball League, finally comes to television at 10 p.m. Sunday on the MLB Network.

Here is what I wrote about it a couple of months ago:

A few weeks ago I watched an entertaining documentary called "Holy Land Hardball" about the planning and execution of the Israel Baseball League's first and so far only season in 2007.

Roslyn's own Erik Kesten, one of the co-directors, told me the film was a "labor of love" and helped him "redefine my idea of success."

The project drives home the fact that for all the close ties between Israel and the U.S., there are certain subjects on which they have absolutely nothing in common.

For example: baseball.

(The IBL's roster of managers featured a who's who of Jewish former major leaguers who played in New York: Ron Blomberg, Ken Holtzman, Art Shamsky.)

Why does the film end with the first pitch of the opening game rather than showing the games themselves that season? Partly for financial reasons and partly because of the level of play the IBL produced.

"If they had seen it," Kesten said of viewers, "they would not have wanted to see it."

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