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Ballplayer: Pelotero

John Leguizamo narrates this gritty documentary that takes an unprecedented look inside the world of Major League Baseball training camps in the Dominican Republic, focusing on two 15-year-olds who are top MLB prospects.
HD Available
Netflix Rating: 3.9
Rotten Tomatoes: Fresh 88%
Critics' score: 88   Audience score: 83   Rotten Tomatoes page
Top Rotten Tomatoes Critics

[The] Directors...try to soften...ugly truths with sentimental stories of teenagers getting signed and pulling their families out of poverty, but the portrait of widespread exploitation overwhelms the intended effect...[ END HERE ]of these subplots full review

Ben Sachs, Chicago Reader

It's an eye-opening look at a flawed, potentially exploitative system and how it is being gamed from all sides of the table -- the story of the collision of youthful dreams and a cutthroat adult cartel. full review

Kenneth Turan, Los Angeles Times

Hard-hitting sports doc examines the darker side of the recruitment of young baseball players in the Dominican Republic for the major leagues. full review

Frank Scheck, Hollywood Reporter

What gives Pelotero its edge is a nexus of corruption, exploitation and betrayal that transforms this well-shot, cannily edited item into an engrossing expose. full review

Ronnie Scheib, Variety

The next time I see some superstar athlete giving an interview that suggests the absence of a functioning soul, I'll think of the two tense, joyless boys at the center of this quietly devastating documentary. full review

Joe Morgenstern, Wall Street Journal

A documentary narrated by John Leguizamo that provides a seldom-seen look inside the training camps run by MLB in that impoverished nation. full review

V.A. Musetto, New York Post

An efficient and often-enthralling documentary that follows the plight of two Dominican hopefuls on their path to the major leagues. full review

David Malitz, Washington Post

We're so used to hearing innocuous cliches come out of the mouths of major leaguers in postgame interviews that the accusations and innuendo in this film are startling. full review

Neil Genzlinger, New York Times

A scrappy documentary about teenage ballplayers in the Dominican Republic. full review

Peter Hartlaub, San Francisco Chronicle

A well-crafted, bravely revealing little film that could be considered essential education for baseball fans. full review

Janice Page, Boston Globe

A surprisingly nuanced essay on the collision between poverty, hope, exploitation and passion. full review

Colin Covert, Minneapolis Star Tribune

A gripping documentary that takes us inside the largely closed world of youth baseball training and recruitment in the Dominican Republic. full review

Andrew O'Hehir, Salon.com

An unexpectedly gripping portrait of how MLB's sausage gets made ... full review

Michael Leaverton, Village Voice
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