'Rookie of the Year' star spreads joy, wears Cubs jersey to costume party

Nineties kids will remember the heart-warming baseball movie Rookie of the Year.

The movie stars Thomas Ian Nicholas as Henry Rowengartner, a boy who recovers from an injury with an amazing pitching arm and is recruited by the Chicago Cubs.

The comedy also stars Gary Busey as Henry's teammate and reluctant mentor. It's one of those childhood-defining movies.

And so it especially excited this reporter when Nicholas paid homage to his 23-year-old movie role this weekend by wearing his Rowengartner jersey to Seth Rogen's Hilarity for Charity Halloween-themed fundraiser.

We revealed to the 36-year-old father that he was our first movie crush, and he wasn't awkward about it. In fact, he said he hears that all of the time.

"My No. 1 answer is, 'What happened? You're not still having a crush on me?'"

Nicholas, whose best known (in places outside of Chicago) for his role in the American Pie franchise, is happy to hear from fans of his 1993 movie.

Yes, even when they're quoting the movie with the line, "Henry Rowengartner, you suck," which happened when he was performing with his band once.

And he has a good time wearing the jersey. In fact, he wore it last month at Wrigley Field where he threw the first pitch at a Cubs game.

"I pretty much throw like a girl, and my fastball is a change-up," he says, explaining that his pitching style is nothing like Henry Rowengartner's lightning-fast technique.

Nicholas wasn't the only star wearing a meta costume at the charity event in Hollywood Saturday: Scott Eastwood channeled Clint Eastwood in an outfit inspired by his dad's movies.


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