When nicknames were cool

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We occasionally get a cool nickname these days, but it’s rare. Mostly we get lame variations of the A-Rod thing, which is a concept I had thought reached its nadir with the ironic “Man-Ram” but came roaring back to life with the non-ironic “Car-Go.” Oy.

But there used to be a time when you could call guys “Dummy” and “Three-Finger” and “Fatty” and “Turkey” without fear of being called insensitive by the nickname police.  Which, now that I think about it, wasn’t very nice and probably caused guys to have self-esteem problems they masked with strong liquor and phony, self-destructive machismo. But dadgummit, the names looked great in the paper!

Mental Floss has a number of great baseball nicknames today, complete with origin story. I highly recommend it.  And how can you pass up a recommendation from a fella some people call Shyster?

Kenley Jansen’s consecutive saves streak ends at 34

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Dodgers closer Kenley Jansen gave up three runs in the top of the ninth inning during Sunday’s game against the Braves, blowing his first save since August 26 last season. He had converted 34 consecutive saves.

Jansen yielded back-to-back singles to lead off the ninth inning, staked to a 4-1 lead. After getting two outs, Matt Adams hit a three-run home run down the right field line to knot the game at four apiece.

After Sunday’s lackluster performance, Jansen is now 24-for-25 in save chances this season with a 1.49 ERA and a 62/2 K/BB ratio in 42 1/3 innings.

Zach Britton sets American League record with 55th consecutive save

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Orioles closer Zach Britton finished Sunday’s 9-7 victory over the Astros with a scoreless ninth inning, earning his sixth save of the season. He has now earned the save in 55 consecutive opportunities dating back to September 2015, setting a new American League record. Tom Gordon previously held the record with 54 consecutive saves. Eric Gagne holds the major league record at 84.

Britton’s last blown save came on September 20, 2015, then converted two more saves before the end of the regular season. He went 47-for-47 in save chances last season and is six-for-six so far this year.

Along with his six saves, Britton has a 2.65 ERA and a 13/8 K/BB ratio in 17 innings this season. The lefty came off the disabled list earlier this month after missing two months with a strained left forearm.