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?

Mets claim Sam Coonrod off waivers from Phillies

Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
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NEW YORK — The active New York Mets added another newcomer to their bullpen mix when they claimed reliever Sam Coonrod off waivers from the NL East rival Philadelphia Phillies.

Coonrod had a 7.82 ERA in 12 appearances covering 12 2/3 innings last year for the National League champions. The right-hander is 7-5 with a 5.27 ERA and five saves in 105 games over four major league seasons with San Francisco and Philadelphia. He has struck out 95 and walked 44 in 97 1/3 innings.

The 30-year-old Coonrod was designated for assignment by the Phillies last week when they signed free agent infielder Josh Harrison.

To make room on the 40-man roster, outfielder Khalil Lee was designated for assignment by the Mets.