This is the time of year when every writer crawls out of the woodwork to offer up year-end summaries of how their team’s season went. 2022 was an interesting year for the continually rebuilding Tigers franchise (read as, incredibly disappointing and tiring), as well as an interesting (read as, surprisingly decent) year in cinema. Having watched a ton of both, and because all the cool kids are doing it, for no good reason let’s compare the two!
Below are movies released in 2022 that I, a cinephile, saw this year (in roughly release order), matched up with a Tigers player. Behold!
Jackass Forever: Wily Peralta
An old group of friends gets together for one more ride, and what a wild and ride it was. The film gives you dependable laughs, along with some duds. Peralta gave the Tigers a solid season despite low expectations, again, and it was a successful reunion.
Death on the Nile: Tyler Alexander
Coming off of a decent first film, the Poirot reboot series stumbled in 2022, having a significantly poorer showing the second time around. Tyler had also shown some promise, but stumbled to a forgettable season.
Moonfall: Kody Clemens
Roland Emmerich continues to stick around, putting out disaster film after disaster film with the same kinds of flaws, and it feels like the Tigers kept running Clemens out there when it was obvious the results weren’t worth the effort. Clemens wasn’t the disaster, as that distinction goes to the organization writ large, but his playing time signified a story spiraling out of the director’s control.
Uncharted: Tucker Barnhart
On the surface, what should have been a surefire smash hit didn’t perform well, and the stars were clearly miscast. Tucker was advertised as a defensive catcher with a solid bat for the position, but he really provided neither in what was a swing for the fences that turned into an infield fly.
Fresh: Riley Greene
One’s a horror flick with Sebastian Stan that kind of came out of nowhere and was… refreshingly good, and the other came in as a Fresh face for the Tigers. While the results weren’t the most amazing, both were a breath of Fresh air for the franchise. If you’re looking for reasons to hope for the future, Greene remains at the top of the list.
The Batman: Javier Baez
A divisive film, The Batman was ultimately a rollercoaster of emotions that delivered on its promise; however, the warts attached, bursts of style over substance and story choices that left people scratching their heads, certainly drove a fair share of fans away. In the end, it’s a new look for the franchise and one people will likely need to get used to.
Baez, despite some defensive struggles and the ugly swings at diving sliders, was still the most valuable Tigers bat in 2022, and there’s a chance we’ll be seeing him for a long time in the D… unless there’s another reboot.
Turning Red: Spencer Turnbull
Because of the red hair, obviously. Mostly we just needed to get Spencer in the mix here, as it’s easy to forget how good he looked in 2021. Hopefully the sequel is Godfather 2 tier.
Morbius: Elvin Rodriguez
Morbius was a dumpster fire of a movie. El-Rod had a 10.62 ERA in just shy of 30 innings. The pitcher showed enough to think he may yet have a future in relief. The movie should never be mentioned again.
The Contractor: Drew Carlton
A competent but ultimately forgettable action film starring Chris Pine seems to match up well with the competent but ultimately forgettable season of Drew Carlton (raise your hand if you remember he was even on the team).
Sonic the Hedgehog 2: Alex Lange
Alex had a surprisingly electric follow-up to a decent breakout year; Lange was one of the most valuable relievers in the bullpen, and Sonic 2 was one of the top box-office hits of the year.
Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore: Michael Pineda
Please, just no more. Hang it up already. Terrible movie, terrible season.
The Lost City: Austin Meadows
The Lost City meets the Lost Season.
The Bad Guys: Jonathan Schoop
The movie’s fantastic, but the title certainly describes Schoop’s bats this season.
The Norseman: Michael Fulmer
A dominant warrior sees his kingdom usurped and ends up far from home in a quest for glory that doesn’t turn out as he hoped.
Dr. Strange in the Multiverse of Madness: Willi Castro
A valuable and yet flawed entry into the MCU matches well with the valuable but flawed Willi Castro. Castro was shockingly one of the best bats on the team, and like MoM being one of the better MCU films in the last cycle, it spells trouble.
The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent: Spencer Torkelson
The title speaks for itself. The movie is fantastic, but Spencer’s season was not, and lofty expectations seemed to play a part in that.
Everything Everywhere All At Once: Harold Castro
Mr. Flexibility played a number of positions this year. The what-if scenario was if his defense at those positions could remain as solid as his bat, and the answer was a resounding no. As for the film, it’s one of the top three movies of the year and could win a few Oscars, so definitely check it out.
Top Gun Maverick: Eric Haase
Want thrills and excitement from something that was surprisingly good? Watch Haase gun down runners or hit majestic bombs out of the park, or watch the long-awaited Top Gun sequel.
Chip n’ Dale: Rescue Rangers: Drew Hutchison
A competent showing from old friends, but nothing terribly exciting in the grand scheme of things.
Jurassic World Dominion: Miguel Cabrera
Clearly, the franchise ran out of steam, resulting in casting gimmicks to drum up attention for this fading but legendary series. The highlights for Miggy’s season were slow milestone chases, and everyone loudly calling for him to hang up the cleats.
Elvis: Kerry Carpenter
Bombastic and in-your-face, Elvis chronicles the flashy and rapid ascent of the King of rock and roll. Carpenter straight-up hit bombs, storming up the ranks from AA to MLB in a wild ride of a season rarely seen from an unheralded youngster.
Lightyear: Derek Law
The question is: who was this for? Law was getting heavily pushed by some sportswriters (ok, maybe just one), and just like Lightyear, when it came time for the debut… he, and the film, were duds.
Minions: The Rise of Gru: Joe Jimenez
The promising and funny series went through a few iffy years (DM3, Minions 1), but had a heck of a resurgence in 2022, much like JJ finally living up to his potential.
Thor: Love and Thunder: Gregory Soto
Solid but ultimately disappointing roller-coaster ride, with electric moments and utterly baffling parts.
DC League of Superpets: Joey Wentz
Overshadowed by bigger names but a very respectable entry into the DC Universe; Wentz had a similar season and finished strong.
See How They Run: Akil Baddoo
Promising film derailed by one fatal flaw (the ending); promising speedster derailed by one fatal flaw (his bat went ice cold).
Prey: Ryan Kreidler
Fresh faces and very basic, no frills premise allows for a solid entry into the Predator franchise. Ryan’s a fresh face that plays solid, no frills defense and has a good chance at being a competent piece of next year’s squad.
Amsterdam: Jeimer Candelario
A film that somehow is worse than the sum of its parts and ends up disappointing. It felt big league, but somehow fell very flat. Could easily say the same about Candy’s final season with the Tigers.
Black Adam: Eduardo Rodriguez
Anti-hero rises from a long time away from civilization to deliver an underwhelming superhero film. Pitcher comes back to the team after a long absence to deliver an underwhelming season.
Weird: The Al Yankovic Story: Daniel Norris
Weird Al meets The Van Man, Daniel Norris, who also marches to the beat of his own drummer.
Enola Holmes 2: Jose Cisnero
Another ho-hum enjoyable entry to the franchise matches another low-key enjoyable season from an underrated bullpen guy on the comeback trail.
Black Panther: Wakanda Forever: Tarik Skubal
The anchor and MVP of this year’s MCU entries matches up well with the most valuable Tigers pitcher of the year. Still neither quite lived up to their promise.
Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery: Matt Manning
While not as great as Knives Out, Glass Onion is quite respectable and leaves you wanting to see what Rian Johnson will do next. Manning had a respectable, if frustrating year at age 24 and leaves many Tigers fans wanting more and wondering if he can take the next step in 2023.
Strange World: Alex Faedo
Kind of a forgotten film, it had a dismal showing in theaters due to lackluster writing. Faedo certainly never felt like one of the big guys in the rotation, posting a forgettable year in his return from surgery.
Violent Night: Andrew Chafin
Simple premise done expertly. Chafin came in, threw the ball well, and did exactly what fans were hoping for.
The Menu: Beau Brieske
Fun idea but the results don’t always match up to the ambition behind them. Brieske had promise but didn’t quite live up to it this year. Still at times the pitches had real bite, and the result were delicious at his best.
Babylon: Rony Garcia
Interesting but absolutely too wild ride looking at the early days of Hollywood (it’s an R-rated Singin’ in the Rain) pairs well with the competent but wild pitching of the team’s former Rule 5 pick.
Please let me know in the comments if you agree or disagree with my takes, and remember not to spoil the films!
Editor’s note: Site moderator Mr. Sunshine penned this article, combining his love of the Detroit Tigers with that of the cinema. You can follow him on his movie blog at Getting Reel with Mr. Sunshine and read his latest reviews of both well-known and lesser-known films.