|Stephanie Plays the Field|
|Season 4, episode 22|
|Air date||March 8, 1991|
|Previous||The Hole-in-the-Wall Gang|
|Next||Joey Goes Hollywood|
In the kitchen, while Michelle is having fun with her coloring book, Danny has returned home from a trip at the supermarket, and asks her to help put away the groceries. She hides one of them under her shirt and tells Danny they're all put up. Unfortunately, he has his shopping list, and could've sworn that he bought a package of chocolate chip cookies (in particular, Chips Ahoy! Selections), and he tells his "Little Princess" that she knows better than to have cookies before dinner, and asks her if she knows where they could've gone. She asks if they're "Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip" as described on the label, and he says they are. They both have a hunch that the "Cookie Monster" took them, but surprise, surprise, the only "Cookie Monster" who could've taken them was Michelle. She knows she's busted, but he still has a little fun with her anyway, reminding her it's just as wrong to hide cookies under her clothing as it is to have them before dinner.
Danny is the head coach of the Giants, a local little league baseball team. Stephanie has fallen for Brett Davis, a star player from a rival team called the Cubs. That makes Stephanie want to join the Giants, and her surprisingly good pitching makes it easy for her to become a member of the team. However, despite her love for him and her heart going "Brett-Brett, Brett-Brett" just thinking about him, getting Brett to like her seems to be even harder than playing against him, so she and D.J. (who's drinking a can of "Fountain Do" as she sees this – see Trivia) head upstairs to their room to have a talk about how to do this, and even mentions her roommate doesn't even have a boyfriend yet, despite having more dating/boyfriend experience than her. D.J. explains that she's a "young woman that's playing hard to get", to which Stephanie can only say, "Well, you're doing a pretty good job."
But 4-year-old Michelle does not seem to understand why they want to be alone with the door locked. When she asks to play with Jesse, he says they played in her room, and she wants to play in their room. However, he plays a quick game of "airplane", and as he flies her out the door, he tells her: "There's no peanuts, there's no movies, but there's plenty of room for landing outside the door! Thanks for flying Air Katsopolis. Have a nice day." Outside the locked door, she yells, "Hey, you locked me out!" He replies, "Good night, Michelle. We'll see ya in the morning." She replies, "Fine, I'm leaving! But you're gonna miss me!"
Then, Michelle storms over to Joey's room and asks why Jesse and Becky want to be alone. He, who is trying to do his taxes, explain that they want some privacy, saying that they're "trying to do their taxes". So they both go over to the attic and explain the situation. Michelle, too mad to explain the situation, has Joey do it, and Joey asks, "Have you no decency?" (see Trivia) He explains that all the "little Munchkin" wants is some quality time with them. Becky decides they can set aside some special time to be with them. Then, Joey, who has to still do his taxes, has his own words turned against him! He and Michelle depart, and Jesse re-locks the door.
Outside, Danny, Stephanie, and Rusty are practicing a few catches, when Danny brings up Stephanie wanting to try out. Rusty remarks that she likes baseball because Brett does, even remarking she can't throw. But Stephanie proves him wrong with just one throw and it lands in his glove and causes a little pain and him to say "Wow, this babe's got arms!", to which Danny reminds him that "My daughter's not a babe. But she does have an arm." Then comes the batting practice, and that gives Danny an idea: She can pitch for the Giants.
The next day is game day, and everyone is excited, as is Michelle, who Danny picked to be bat girl. Michelle, however, comes downstairs to the kitchen wearing a Batman costume (thinking she's Batgirl). Danny reminds her, "You're not fighting crime, you're handing out bats." She replies, "Aw, nuts!", but he still lets her wear the cape. At that point, D.J. tells Stephanie that "Brett-Brett, Brett-Brett" is here. In any event, Brett shows her his baseball bat, and that he put an "ST" with a heart drawn around it. After he leaves, Danny asks her to eat her breakfast. Stephanie is not sure about the pressure put on her. But Danny, who also does not want any more pressure put on her than she already has, assures her that with every pitch she throws, she is doing the best she can.
In the upcoming game, the Giants are scheduled to play against the Cubs, so Brett tells Stephanie to take it easy and not throw the "Tanner Twister" (a name for Stephanie's pitch dubbed by Rusty, a member of her team) whenever he is at bat, because his father will be at the game videotaping, and Brett does not want his father to see him get outdone by a girl. The rest of the family is also there, including Joey, who's covering the play-by-play. After Brett hits a home run off of Stephanie, she can't bring herself to throw the rest of the game for Brett.
In the top of the 5th, with a runner on 3rd, and the score tied 1-1, Stephanie comes up to bat. But even with a hit, she's out at 1st. Jesse isn't happy with the call and argues with the umpire, and Becky tells him to sit down and behave, and she'll buy them snow cones, and he complies. Danny, however, agrees with the ump.
In the bottom of the 6th and last inning of the game, the score is 2-1 in favor of the Giants, with runners on 2nd and 3rd, and coming up to bat is Brett. She throws the first two strikes, and he shows the "ST"-drawn heart on his bat, thus leading Stephanie to call a time-out.
That time-out is a pep talk from D.J., where she must decide between true love or self-respect. That means she must decide between either Brett hitting the game-winning run, letting her team and herself down, and becoming the goat (true love)—or striking him out and letting him down, winning the game, and becoming the hero (self-respect)—the Giants win when Stephanie strikes him out for the third and final out of the inning, thus making her the game's hero. Final score: Giants 2, Cubs 1.
The next day, as she sits outside on the porch, Stephanie pets Comet, saying that next time he sees her liking a boy to talk her out of it. Fortunately, when Brett comes by to see her, he understands why she did it, and admits that he should not have asked her to go easy on him at the game. She decides to take him inside to watch sports, but as she goes in, Comet barks. She replies to him that she was just kidding on her comment to him (as the studio audience applauds and the EP credits appear).
Danny: Michelle is so excited. I told her she could be bat boy at the game today. [Michelle comes downstairs to the kitchen wearing a Batman costume]
Michelle: Daddy, I’m here.
Danny: Michelle, you’re not fighting crime. You’re handing out baseball bats.
Michelle: Aw, nuts! [turns to Danny] Can I still wear the cape?
Danny: Sure, sweetheart.
- Ironically, the Giants are the Major League Baseball team in San Francisco, while the Cubs are one of two MLB teams in Chicago. Both teams are in the National League
- D.J.'s "Fountain Do" can is an obvious parody of Mountain Dew
- Joey saying, "Have you no decency?" may be a take on the quote directed to Senator Joseph McCarthy at the Army hearings against him: "At long last, have you no sense of decency, sir?"