CASTILLO: (v.o.) Clearwater. S--t. I'm still only in Clearwater... Every time I think I'm gonna wake up in the Bank.
Last year, with the Mets after the pop up, it was worse. I'd wake up and there would be nothing. I hardly said a word to the team until I said "yes" to my release. Now I'm here, and I want to be there. Now that I'm here, all I can think about is getting back to the bigs. I'm here a week now...waiting for a spot on the roster...getting softer. Every minute I stay in this room, I get weaker, and every minute Cholly squats in the bush, he gets skinnier. Each time I look around, the walls move in a little tighter.
Everyone gets everything he wants. I wanted a baseball job, and for my sins, they gave me one. Brought it up to me like room service.
Two men approach the hotel room:
AGENT: Luis Castillo? Luis? Are you in there?
CASTILLO (v.o.): It was a real choice baseball job, and when it was over, I'd never want another.
AGENT: We're going to the airport, Luis.
CASTILLOA (v.o.): I was going to the worst place in the world, and I didn't even know it yet. Weeks away and hundreds of miles up a river that snaked through rustbelt Pennsylvania like a main circuit cable that plugged straight into Utley. It was no accident that I got to be the caretaker of Chase C. Utley's memory, any more than being in Clearwater was an accident. There is no way to tell his story without telling my own. And if his story is really a confession, then so is my own.
In the briefing room:
SCOTT PROEFROCK: Come in...have a seat...want a smoke?
CASTILLO: No thanks.
PROEFROCK: Luis - have you ever seen this gentleman before? [gestures] Ever met Rubes or myself?
CASTILLO: No, sir. Not personally.
PROEFROCK: Did you not work for the LOLMets last year?
CASTILLO: No sir.
PROEFROCK: Did you not purposefully drop a pop up to lose a game against the Yankees just to piss off Mets fans and force a trade or your outright release?
CASTILLO: I am unaware or any such activity or operation - nor would I be disposed to discuss such an operation if it did in fact exist, sir.
AMARO: I thought we'd have a bit of lunch while we talk. Let's see what we have...crab fries...schmitters. Try some, Scott, pass it around. Luis, I don't know how you feel about this schmitter, but if you'll eat it, you'll never have to prove your courage in any other way..."
PROEFROCK: Luis, have you heard of Chase Utley?
CASTILLO: I've heard the name.
AMARO: Scott -- would you play the tape for Luis, please. Listen carefully.
PROEFROCK: This was monitored out of Lehigh Valley. It has been verified as Chase Utley's voice.
UTLEY (ON TAPE): I watched Wilson Valdez get 200 plate appearances. That's my dream. That's my nightmare. Hitting into 30 double plays. Making "productive outs." And getting more plate appearances.
UTLEY (ON TAPE): We must destroy them. We must incinerate them. Writer after writer. Morgan after Morgan. Chass after Chass. And they call me an assassin. What do you call it when the assassins accuse the assassin? They lie...they lie and we have to be merciful for those who lie. Those nabobs. I hate them. How I hate them...
AMARO: Chase Utley was one of the most outstanding second basemen this country has ever produced. He was brilliant and outstanding in every way. He was a good man, too, fixing Elvis' glands for the Bat. A humanitarian man. A man of wit and humor. Then he started to read TheGoodPhight. After that, his ideas...methods...have become unsound...unsound.
PROEFROCK: Now he's crossed into the Lehigh Valley with his blogger army who, aside from the smell, worship the man like a god. They follow his every order, however ridiculous.
AMARO: You see, Luis... In this game, things get confused out there. Scouting, analysis, tools, and contracts... Out there with the bloggers, it must be a temptation to be a god. Because there's a conflict in every human heart between the rational and the irrational, between good and evil. The good does not always triumph. Sometimes the dark side wins and the people who take over are what Conlin called antisocial young men living in their mothers' basements. Every man has a breaking point. You and I have. Chase Utley has reached his. And very obviously, he has gone insane.
CASTILLO: Yes sir. Very much so, sir. Obviously insane.
PROEFROCK: Your mission is to proceed up the Lehigh River. Pick up Utley's path at the Sands, follow it to Erv's across from the Iron Pigs' field, and learn what you can there. When you find Utley, infiltrate his team by whatever means available and terminate his command.
WILLARD: Terminate? Utley?
AMARO: He's out there operating without any decent restraint. Totally beyond the pale of any acceptable human conduct.
PROEFROCK: Terminate with extreme prejudice.
AMARO: You understand, Luis, that this operation does not exist, nor will it ever exist.