Baseball players and bad music go together

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Two items caught my eye this morning that make me realize how bad things have gotten with ballplayers and their love of bad music.

First is a post by MLB.com’s Anthony Castrovince, detailing the walkup (and walkout) music of the Cleveland Indians. The takeaway: the vast majority of Indians like very bad music.  There are a couple of exceptions. Matt LaPorta likes a Tom Petty song, for example, but his list — which also includes Alabama and the Eagels — suggests that he may be 50 years-old.

Shelley Duncan comes out to “The Stroke” by Billy Squier, which is OK, I guess, but I have to scrutinize him pretty closely seeing as though my daughter likes him.  Would you let your daughter swoon over a Billy Squier fan?  Have you seen the video for “Rock me tonight?

Finally, why Chris Perez — a relief pitcher — comes out to “Firestarter” suggests that he’s either clueless of has a good sense of irony. I hope it’s the irony.

Then there’s Baltimore Orioles pitcher Jeremy Guthrie.  He’s his own sad case.  He was at MLB.com’s Fan Cave last week where an intervention was staged by Mike O’Hara and Ryan Wagner. I don’t think it will be a success:

I change my mind about this a lot, but at the moment, my walkup music would rotate between “What’d I Say” by Ray Charles, “Where is my Mind” by the Pixies and “How Soon is Now” by the Smiths. Yeah, that last one is kind of mopey for walkup music, but the intro is pretty sweet.

I’d normally say “don’t judge me” now, but I suppose I pretty much gave up my right to that.

Yankees to hire Josh Bard as their new bench coach

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Aaron Boone has no experience as a coach or a manager at any level. As such, some have speculated that he’d hire a more seasoned hand as his bench coach as he begins his first season as Yankees manager. Someone like, say, Eric Wedge, who was a candidate for the job Boone got and who once managed Boone in Cleveland.

Nope. According to MLB.com’s Mark Feinsand, he’s going with Josh Bard.

Bard, 39, was a teammate of Boone’s with the Indians in 2005. He’s not without coaching experience, having spent the last two seasons as the Dodgers’ bullpen coach, but he’s not that Gene Lamont/Don Zimmer-type we often see in the bench coach role.

Which is fine because different managers want different things from their bench coach. Some are strategy guys, helping with in-game decision making. Others are relationship guys who help managers understand all of the dynamics of the clubhouse while they’re worrying more about lineups and stuff. Others are trust guys, who can serve as the manager’s sounding board, among other things. Some are combinations of all of these things. As Feinsand notes in his story, Boone said at his introductory press conference that he’s looking for this:

“I want smart sitting next to me. I want confidence sitting next to me. I want a guy who can walk out into that room and as I talk about relationships I expect to have with my players, I expect that even to be more so with my coaching staff. Whether that is a guy with all kinds of experience or little experience. I am not concerned about that.”