The Pioneer League: Bacon Edition

As I mentioned in my previous post, I’m on a mission to see if I can connect all minor league baseball teams to Kevin Bacon in some way. I started with the Pioneer League since I’ve already done the research and connected him to both the Idaho Falls Chukars and the Grand Junction Rockies. Here’s a look at what I found when I compared Kevin Bacon to the Pioneer League.

Idaho Falls Chukars

Link 1) 50 Cent wore an Idaho Falls Chukars hat in his Wait Until Tonight music video. (See screen grab below.)


Screen grab from the Wait Until Tonight music video as found on Youtube.

50 Cent was in Get Rich or Die Tryin’ with Terrence Howard. Terrence Howard was in Movie 43 with Hugh Jackman. Finally, Hugh Jackman made a cameo in X-Men: First Class which starred Kevin Bacon.

Link 2) 50 Cent was in Get Rich Or Die Tryin’ with Viola Davis. Viola Davis was in The Help with Emma Stone. Emma Stone was in Crazy, Stupid, Love with Kevin Bacon.

Link 3) We can even trace the chain back to Idaho Falls from Kevin Bacon. Kevin Bacon was in A River Wild with Meryl Streep. Meryl Streep was in Death Becomes Her with Bruce Willis. Bruce Willis was in Setup with 50 Cent who wore a Chukars hat in his video Wait Until Tonight.

Grand Junction Rockies

Link 1) A movie called The Lucky Ones shot in both Denver and Grand Junction before it was released in 2008. It starred several high profile actors including Rachel McAdams, Michael Pena, and Tim Robbins. Robbins was in Mystic River with Sean Penn and Kevin Bacon.
Link 2) American Flyers was shot in Grand Junction back in the late 1980s. According to IMDB, a sports physician convinces his brother to train with him for a bicycle race across the Rocky Mountains. The movie starred Kevin Costner who was in JFK with Kevin Bacon.
Link 3) Scenes from the movie Starman were shot in Grand Junction before the film was released in 1984. Apparently an alien asked a widow to drive him from Wisconsin to Arizona and they made stops in Colorado. Jeff Bridges was the lead actor and he costarred with Kevin Bacon in R.I.P.D.
Link 4) Our final chain is traced through a movie that shot scenes in Grand Junction back in 1950. It was called Devil’s Doorway and starred Robert Taylor. Taylor worked on a movie called The Day The Hot Line Got Hot with George Chakiris. Chakiris is best known for playing Bernardo in West Side Story but also did an episode of Murder She Wrote with Angela Lansbury. Lansbury costarred with Dianne Wiest in The Blackwater Lightship and Wiest was in Footloose with Kevin Bacon.

Billings Mustangs

Link 1) The 2013 movie Nebraska was partially filmed in Billings and the main character of the movie is originally from Billings. He’s played by Bruce Dern. Dern was on the TV show Big Love with Bill Paxton. Paxton was in Apollo 13 with Kevin Bacon.

Link 2) Another link can be made through Dern’s Nebraska co-star Will Forte. Forte was in Rock of Ages with Tom Cruise. Cruise was in A Few Good Men with Kevin Bacon.

Link 3) And yet another link can be made through Dern and Forte’s co-star Rance Howard. Howard was in Chinatown with Jack Nicholson who was also in A Few Good Men with Kevin Bacon.

Link 4) There was a movie filmed in Billings called Little Big Man that was released in 1970 and starred Dustin Hoffman. Hoffman was in Stranger Than Fiction with Maggie Gyllenhaal. She was The Dark Knight with Gary Oldman and Oldman was in Criminal Law with Kevin Bacon.

Great Falls Voyagers

Link 1) Gerald R. Molen was born in Great Falls and has produced various Hollywood blockbusters over the years working on many projects with Steven Spielberg. He even won an Oscar for helping produce Schindler’s List. He also produced Minority Report starring Tom Cruise who was in A Few Good Men with Kevin Bacon.

Link 2) A film from the 1970s called Thunderbolt and Lightfoot starring Clint Eastwood filmed in Great Falls. Clint Eastwood went on to direct Mystic River which starred Kevin Bacon.

Link 3) Thunderbolt and Lightfoot also starred Jeff Bridges. Bridges was in R.I.P.D. with Kevin Bacon.

Link 4) An independent film shot in Great Falls called The Slaughter Rule was released in 2002 and starred a young Ryan Gosling. Gosling was in Crazy, Stupid, Love with Kevin Bacon.

Link 5) Another notable film to shoot in Great Falls is The Untouchables which starred Kevin Costner. Costner starred in JFK with Kevin Bacon.

Helena Brewers

Link 1) Famed actor Gary Cooper is from Helena, Montana. He was in the 1961 film The Naked Edge with Peter Cushing. Cushing was in Top Secret! with Val Kilmer who was in Kiss Kiss Bang Bang with Michelle Monaghan. Monaghan starred in Patriots Day with Kevin Bacon.

Link 2) Gary Cooper also starred alongside Charlton Heston in The Wreck of The Mary Deare. Heston starred in Kenneth Branagh’s Hamlet with Julie Christie. Christie was in New York, I Love You with John Hurt. Hurt starred with Kevin Bacon in Jayne Mansfield’s Car.

Missoula Osprey

Link 1) Dana Carvey was born in Missoula, Montana before making it as a comedian. He was in The Master Of Disguise with Brent Spiner who was in The Aviator with John C. Reilly. Reilly was in The River Wild with Kevin Bacon.

Link 2) Dana Carvey was also in Wayne’s World with Mike Myers. Myers was in Mystery, Alaska with Burt Reynolds. Reynolds was in Starting Over with Kevin Bacon. It was one of Bacon’s very first roles.

Link 3) David Lynch is a writer/director who was born in Missoula. He went on to direct The Elephant Man starring John Hurt. Hurt was in Jayne Mansfield’s Car with Kevin Bacon.

Link 4) The Elephant Man also starred Anthony Hopkins who was in Thor with Josh Dallas. Dallas stars in Once Upon A Time alongside Ginnifer Goodwin. She was in Big Love with Bill Paxton who was in Apollo 13 with Kevin Bacon.

Ogden Raptors

Link 1) The TV mini-series The Stand filmed in Ogden back in 1994 and starred Gary Sinise. He was in Apollo 13 with Kevin Bacon.

Link 2) The baseball classic The Sandlot was also filmed in the Ogden area. James Earl Jones stars in that film as well as Patriot Games alongside Samuel L. Jackson. Jackson starred with Mark Ruffalo in The Avengers and Ruffalo worked with Kevin Bacon on a small movie called In The Cut.

Link 3)  Con Air filmed at the Ogden airport before the film was released in 1997. The movie starred John Malkovich who was also in Changeling. Changeling was directed by Clint Eastwood who also directed Mystic River which starred Kevin Bacon.

Orem Owlz

Link 1) Allison Holker is a professional dancer who grew up in Orem. She married Stephen “tWitch” Boss who is the guest DJ on The Ellen Degeneres Show. She voiced Dory alongside Albert Brooks who voice Marlin in Finding Nemo. Brooks was in Broadcast News with Jack Nicholson who was in A Few Good Men with Kevin Bacon.

Link 2) Julianne Hough is an actress and dancer who was born in Salt Lake City but started her dancing training in Orem. She learned ballroom dancing at the Center Stage Performing Arts Studio. She was in the rock musical Rock Of Ages with Tom Cruise who was in A Few Good Men with Kevin Bacon.

Link 3) Another one of her Rock Of Ages co-stars was Alec Baldwin. He was in The Departed with Jack Nicholson who was also with Kevin Bacon in A Few Good Men.

Link 4) Yet another one of her co-stars was Russell Brand. He was in Arthur with Helen Mirren who was in National Treasure: Book Of Secrets with Nicholas Cage who starred in Con Air alongside John Malkovich who was in Changeling. Changeling and Mystic River were both directed by Clint Eastwood and Kevin Bacon was in Mystic River.

Link 5) Hough also starred in Safe Haven alongside Josh Duhamel. He was in Win A Date With Tad Hamilton alongside Ginnifer Goodwin. She starred in Big Love with Bill Paxton who was in Apollo 13 with Kevin Bacon.

These are just some of the links that connect Kevin Bacon to every minor league baseball community in the Pioneer League. Eight teams down as I continue my quest to connect Kevin Bacon to minor league baseball communities across the country.

Update: Since this post, the Helena Brewers are no longer in the Pioneer League and the Rocky Mountain Vibes are a new Pioneer League addition. Here is the connection between Kevin Bacon and the Rocky Mountain Vibes.

Rocky Mountain Vibes

Link 1) The 2019 season will be the Vibes first. The team was formerly known as the Colorado Springs Sky Sox. Brad Ausmus played in 76 games for the Sky Sox in 1993. He managed the Team Israel baseball team for the 2013 World Baseball Classic. One of the players he managed was Cody Decker. Decker was a security guard in a 2015 episode of State Of Affairs which stars Katherine Heigl. She was in The Nut Job with Brendan Fraser who was in The Air I Breathe with Kevin Bacon.