Connecticut Public Features New Britain Baseball Legend In New Documentary Film “Far From Home: The Steve Dalkowski Story”
Connecticut Public premieres Tom Chiappetta’s documentary film “Far From Home: The Steve Dalkowski Story” on Saturday, Oct. 10 at 7 p.m. Thirty years in the making, the film features exclusive interviews and rare footage never previously aired in telling this once-in-a-lifetime sports figure’s extraordinary story.
The story chronicles the on- and off-the-field feats of the “greatest baseball pitcher who never was:” New Britain, Connecticut’s very own Steve Dalkowski. A high school sports hero blessed with athletic talent and a left-arm labeled a “gift of the gods” by baseball experts in the 1950s, the film examines the frustrations and obstacles he faced, including a lifelong struggle with alcoholism. While “Dalko” never pitched a single day in the major leagues, the film documents and reveals the boundless mythical stories surrounding a man who became a “living legend.”
Baseball and cinema luminaries offer tributes
The documentary follows Dalkowski’s life through interviews with coaches, teammates, friends and family, and testimonials from some of the greatest names in baseball. Also featured is insight from two of Hollywood’s top baseball film directors in Ron Shelton (“Bull Durham”) and David S. Ward (“Major League”).
- Steve Dalkowski had “the most God-given ability of any one pitcher I ever had,” according to Hall of Fame Baseball Manager Earl Weaver.
- “Grab your helmets and run behind buildings, this guy throws unguided missiles,” remembers MLB Hall of Famer Lou Brock.
- “Steve was probably blessed with the greatest left arm anybody in the world ever had,” says former teammate Frank Zupo.
- Former Baltimore Orioles skipper Cal Ripken, Sr. relates “Dalkowski threw the ball 110 or maybe 115 miles per hour.”
This is Chiappetta’s filmmaking debut. A Dalkowski and baseball historian, the Norwalk resident combined 20 interviews with people that play a part in the Dalkowski tale with years of factual research to create a compelling portrait of this culture and sports folk hero. His experiences as a former Connecticut sportswriter, sports TV executive, and lifetime Orioles’ fan help bring to life Dalkowski’s journey from being signed right out of high school by the Birds in 1957 to his passing in April 2020.
“We’re so pleased to be able to share Steve’s legacy with our viewers,” said Tim Rasmussen, Chief Content Officer, for Connecticut Public. “As a native of Connecticut, his story offers insights into a unique time in sports history and how, despite a lifetime of ups and downs, hope and redemption can be achieved with the help of family and friends.”
Where to Watch: Far From Home: The Steve Dalkowski Story premieres Saturday, October 10 at 7 p.m. on CPTV. It can also be streamed online at cptv.org. For a preview of the program click here:
For a complete schedule of programming, visit cptv.org/schedule.
FAR FROM HOME – THE STEVE DALKOWSKI STORY
FILM INTERVIEW LIST
- Steve Dalkowski (deceased)
- Virginia Dalkowski – Second wife (deceased)
- Pat Cain – Sister
FRIENDS FROM NEW BRITAIN
- Ken Cullum – High school teammate, former baseball minor leaguer (deceased)
- Andy Baylock – Childhood friend, high school catcher and former UConn baseball coach
- Bill Huber – High school baseball coach
FORMER ORIOLES/MINOR LEAGUE TEAMMATES
- Boog Powell
- Brooks Robinson – Baseball Hall of Famer
- Frank Zupo (deceased)
FORMER ORIOLES COACHES/MANAGERS
- Cal Ripken Sr. (deceased)
- Earl Weaver – Baseball Hall of Famer (deceased)
FORMER ORIOLES PUBLIC RELATIONS DIRECTOR
- Bob Brown
MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL EXECUTIVE
- Roland Hemond (released Dalkowski from baseball in 1966)
OPPONENTS WHO FACED DALKOWSKI
- Lou Brock – Baseball Hall of Famer (deceased)
MAJOR LEAGUERS WHO REMEMBER HIM
- Ryan Duren (deceased) (also alcohol abuse expert for MLB)
UMPIRE WHO WORKED HIS GAMES
- Doug Harvey- Baseball Hall of Famer (deceased)
- John Steadman, Baltimore American/Sun (deceased)
BASEBALL MOVIE DIRECTORS/WRITERS
- Ron Shelton, “Bull Durham”
David S. Ward, “Major League”
- Tom Chiappetta
About Connecticut Public:
Connecticut Public is home to Connecticut Public Television and Connecticut Public Radio, which together serve nearly one million citizens each month, as well as many digital and online platforms. Through our mission to inform, educate and inspire the people of Connecticut, we connect people of all ages to high-quality journalism, storytelling, education and experiences, and amplify the voices of our diverse communities. Connecticut Public is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, with an $22 million annual budget, funded primarily through community support from individuals, foundations and corporate sponsors.