R.A. Dickey's story is one of perseverance through adversity.
Dickey, a 37-year-old knuckleballer for the New York Mets, captured the imagination of sports fans and non-fans alike, making them believe that anything is possible with a little hard work and determination.
The Ultimate Underdog?
Dickey's story is perhaps even more captivating than the two aforementioned stars, as he earned his first All-Star nod at age 37, just a few short years after being left on the scrap heap by the Minnesota Twins.
Dickey was essentially a journeyman before finding a home with the New York Mets, as he suffered through mediocre campaigns with the Texas Rangers, Seattle Mariners and Twins between 2001 and 2010.
As he detailed in his book, he also had to overcome being abused as a child.
The 37-year-old already surpassed his career-best tally in victories, and there's still two months left to go on the season. He was named National League Pitcher of the Month, and is in the running for the starting nod in the All-Star Game and perhaps even the NL Cy Young Award.
This is the stuff dreams are made of.
Dickey gives hope to every minor-leaguer who thinks they will never make it to the pros, and to every youth league player about to give up on the game.
He's an inspirational figure for people of all ages, and that's something Hollywood thrives on.
Dickey vs Rudy
Dickey's story is similar to the 1993 classic, "Rudy," a tale about an athlete who overcomes the odds to fulfill his dream of playing college football.
In that story, Rudy is too small to play college football, and his raw athletic skills were sub-par. But with the will to succeed, the spirit of a champion and an exceptional work ethic, Rudy accomplished his dream.
Rudy's domestic total gross was $22,750,363, and the film became a cult classic among sports fans.
Would people go see the R.A. Dickey story if it was turned into a movie?
As we saw with the 2011 hit, "Moneyball," niche subjects can be turned into box office hits with the right combination of skilled veteran actors and positive marketing campaigns.
Dickey's is a story that everyone can root for, not just New York Mets fans.
Eric Holden is a lifelong New York Mets fan. Follow him on Twitter @ericholden.
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