For 11 year-old Daniel “Duke” Burroughs, his three months of summer vacation were already planned out. If it were up to him, all day and every day would be spent on the local baseball field. For most kids growing up in Caledonia, Minnesota, population 2965, that wouldn’t be much of a problem, but not every kid’s dad is the Caledonia Chief of Police.
Chief Mike Burroughs doesn’t have a problem with Duke playing baseball, but his other summer responsibilities are just as important. Like mowing the lawn, swimming lessons, chores around the house, and Summer Camp. If Duke wants to continue playing baseball, he better stay loyal to his duties, or he’ll soon be in his dad’s doghouse. While his mom Linda has always been his #1 cheerleader, she knows family responsibilities come first.
Duke isn’t the only sibling of the Burroughs family. His brother Brent just graduated from high school and is working at Summer Camp for the next three months - but that’s not the only reason Duke's chores just got doubled for the summer. His 16 year-old sister Brandy keeps a full-time job of her own, and it happens to be at his second favorite hang-out, the Caledonia Swimming Pool. If dealing with the lifeguards at the pool was a problem already, Duke and his buddies better make sure they don’t provoke Brandy – or they know, they’ll be looking from the outside in.
For Jake Klein, the coach of Caledonia’s 12 and Under baseball team, he’s got a few problems of his own. Caledonia’s legendary high school coach Gus Thompson just retired, and since Jake has been a teacher and assistant coach for the last six years, he thought he’d be the next in line. The Caledonia School Board unfortunately has other ideas. They’ve got their eye on a local favorite who’s coming to the end of his professional baseball career, and they plan to interview him for the job at the end of the summer. Plus, Jake’s longtime girlfriend wants to settle down and get married, but with the uncertainty of the high school coaching job at stake, Jake’s dream of being a head coach could turn his life into another direction.
If Caledonia’s 12 and Under baseball team could have a successful run this summer, at least that’ll keep Jake happy. When the kids show up and impress him with their fast-developing baseball skills and team unity, he’s pleasantly surprised. When he discovers how good they turn out to be, Jake’s passion for coaching reaches another level. With fireballer Jared Rockwell, hard-hitting Travis King, and speedster Mitchell Roberts leading the team, Caledonia rolls through the first half of league play undefeated. When the Midwest Stars Baseball Tournament in Rochester, Minnesota rolls around, Duke has a big time conflict. His Summer Camp is scheduled on the same week, and he might have to miss the biggest tournament of the year. Unless he can convince his dad to let him out of camp early…and that would be no easy feat.
Whether Duke plays in the tournament, or whether the Caledonia baseball team becomes the stars of Rochester or not. One thing is for sure, these boys have definitely proved, that they are…THE STARS OF SUMMER.