“Heroes get remembered, but legends never die. Follow your heart kid, you can never go wrong.” That’s one of the many iconic messages from 1993’s The Sandlot. It’s a film that continues to live on – each and every summer capturing the hearts of baseball fans across the world.
I had the privilege to sit down with Marty York who portrayed Alan ‘Yeah-Yeah’ McClennan to chat about life, love, and the longevity of this classic film.
Chive: Today we are joined by Marty York. You’ve seen him in Boy Meets World, The Eric Andre Show... Thank you so much for being here. How’s it going?
Marty York: Good, man. Just took a little cat nap because I’ve been going nonstop touring here for like the past three months now.
Chive: Yeah, with the 30th anniversary.
Marty: Yeah, we’ve been all over the country and just came back from the Baseball Hall of Fame out in Cooperstown, New York and it’s crazy, man.
Chive: Well let’s jump right in! I’m especially curious – I recently spoke with Thomas Ian Nicholas from Rookie of the Year and I was wondering, did you actually play baseball growing up or was it something you had to embrace for the film?
Marty: I didn’t play baseball, I actually played soccer for about three years before I moved to Los Angeles. And actually, that was the first time I started playing baseball. I wasn’t good, you know? Like at first they took all the guys after we all got cast in the film – they took us all to a field out here in Los Angeles. The guy who coached us was Squints’ grandpa in the scene where he’s looking back in the black and white scene – that was our coach, Daniel Zacapa.
He’s an actor. He’s been in a lot of stuff, but he’s also a phenomenal baseball player. We worked with him for about, I would say about a month and a half, two months before we started filming. And everybody was kind of new at baseball, or there were a few that had played here and there but for the most part, none of us were really all that good. Mike was really good. Benny the Jet. He was already a very good baseball player. The rest of us…not so much.