Thursday, May 21, 2009

Nicknames need to improve, uh, Hilly

Posted By on Thu, May 21, 2009 at 8:51 AM

click to enlarge 3437255818_e142c59e90.jpg

It was exciting to glance at Bob Dutton's recap of the Royals' come-from-behind win Tuesday night and see the name "Zeus." Finally, a Royal with a cool nickname!

But then, upon closer reading, it became evident that "Zeus" had not been assigned to a player who, say, has white flecks in his beard. It's simply a truncated form of DeJesus, as in David.

The Royals are an improved ballclub, and it's high time the players and coaches put more thought into the names they use for each other (at least in public). Listen to manager Trey Hillman. Bench coach John Gibbons is "Gibby." Catcher John Buck is "Bucky." Pitching coach Bob McClure is "Mac." Pitcher Brian Bannister? Yep, "Banny."

Zzzzz.

Good nicknames are in such short supply that dermatologist/blogger/radio host/superfan Rany Jazayerli has had to lend his sizable brain power to the cause. Last year, Jazayerli started the Nickname Project in an effort to break the Royals of their habit of referring to each other in diminutives. The project takes credit for grafting the nickname "Mexicutioner" onto closer Joakim Soria. Kansas City Star baseball writer Sam Mellinger has also made commendable efforts.

click to enlarge 87F_OilCan.jpg
Uncreative nicknames are by no means limited to the Royals. (As Jazayerli points out, "A-Rod" is a soul killer.) But Hillman, a man so uptight he poops Jesus figurines, deserves at least some blame. His humorlessness can't be helping the process. Would Travis Hafner be "Pronk" today if Hillman was managing the Cleveland Indians six years ago? Maybe not.

My challenge to Hillman would be this: If you can't think of anything original, refer to your players by the names their mamas gave them. It's either "Miguel" (or "Olivo") -- not "Miggy." And through that void, may nicknames good enough to make baseball cards flow.

I, for one, am going to start referring to Jose Guillen as "Cuddles."

Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Most Popular Stories

Slideshows

All contents ©2014 Kansas City Pitch LLC
All rights reserved. No part of this service may be reproduced in any form without the express written permission of Kansas City Pitch LLC,
except that an individual may download and/or forward articles via email to a reasonable number of recipients for personal, non-commercial purposes.

All contents © 2012 SouthComm, Inc. 210 12th Ave S. Ste. 100, Nashville, TN 37203. (615) 244-7989.
All rights reserved. No part of this service may be reproduced in any form without the express written permission of SouthComm, Inc.
except that an individual may download and/or forward articles via email to a reasonable number of recipients for personal, non-commercial purposes.
Website powered by Foundation