Players’ Weekend was introduced last year as a chance for players to show some creativity in their uniform choices, and it was so popular it returns for a second year, to be held August 24-26 when the Royals are at home to host the Indians. Last year, Royals players were not particularly creative and I can’t say they really stepped up their game this year, although there are a few inspired choices from some new faces.
You can count on Danny Duffy flexing his creative muscles, and “Chill Sergeant” just fits him like a glove. Ryan O’Hearn is a welcome addition this year, with the brotastic “Brohearn” nickname. New outfielder Brett Phillips brings his longtime nickname over from the Brewers - “Maverick.”
But many of the names are pretty uninspired. Whit Merrifield goes with “Whitley” this year, which is just his full first name. Last it was his childhood nickname “Whitbird”, but why won’t he just embrace the “Two Hit Whit” nickname Royals Twitter has given him?
Most of the nicknames are just the players’ last name with a “y” or “o” at the end. Alex Gordon is “Gordo”. Heath Fillmyer is “Filly.” Glenns Parkman is “Sparky.” Eric Skoglund is “Skogs.” Brian Flynn is the linguistically challenging “Flynny”. Tim Hill is the laziest at coming up with a name, simply going with “Hill” (perhaps a tribute to the Sugar Hill Gang? Mobster Henry Hill? Hillary Clinton?)
Some of the Latin players are a bit more creative. Salvador Perez repeats his nickname for last year, “El Niño”, Spanish for “the boy.” Rosell Herrera’s nickname “Varon”, means “man”. So we are clear about what gender these players are!
The Royals aren’t the only ones who aren’t particularly creative.
There are four Players Weekend nicknames with "Dog" or "Dogg" in them, three with "Dawg."— Craig Calcaterra (@craigcalcaterra) August 9, 2018
This is gonna be like the "Zack/Zach" thing where I'll have to always look back to check, isn't it?
But there are a few other good ones out there.
The Tribe's Players' Weekend nicknames have been unveiled. "Not Justin" Bieber takes home the gold ribbon: https://t.co/a2nvbi2kqF— Jordan Bastian (@MLBastian) August 9, 2018
Hunter Pence is a treasure and should never be allowed to retire from MLB. His jersey nickname for this year’s #PlayersWeekend...? UNDERPANTS— Maury Brown (@BizballMaury) August 9, 2018
Brad Boxberger wins Players Weekend pic.twitter.com/HlsukNvsbh— Pete Blackburn (@PeteBlackburn) August 9, 2018
Then there were the most solemn tributes.
And uh, maybe you should have had Roberto Osuna sit this one out, Astros.
there's toeing the line of being tone deaf, there's tone deaf, and then there's running a marathon where the starting point is a big line painted with the words TONE DEAF pic.twitter.com/eHrrxn9tuW— Whitney McIntosh (@WhitneyM02) August 9, 2018
What do you think of these nicknames? Can you come up with anything better for these players?