In life there are many big questions. Why are we here? What is the true meaning of life? Is a nickname you give yourself really a nickname at all?
Today, let’s focus on the third question.
To me, the special thing about nicknames is that they are supposed to be earned. Years ago my dad called me “Scooter” because before I learned to crawl, I used to scoot around the apartment in delight whenever my parents played the Spin Doctors “Jimmy Olsen Blues” on the stereo. Since that day, the name has stuck with me, amusing those I encounter that hear the tale.
A few years later a young Ryan Gennett refused to wear his seat belt. In an effort to teach him about vehicular safety, his mother took him on a trip to the local police department. When questioned by the officer, Ryan refused to give his name, instead creating the alias “Scooter” based on his favorite Muppet Babies character. On that day, Scooter Gennett inadvertently inspired a nickname that would stay with him for years to come.
That is what nicknames are. They are pure. They arise organically. And so, while I appreciate that the players are allowed to chose whatever name they desire on the back of their jersey for Player’s Weekend in an effort to have fun and show off some creativity, I also understand the difficulty players are faced with this choice. Not everyone has a fun nickname. So when the names chosen appear “boring”, I think we should cut the players some slack. Assigning yourself a nickname for the sake of having one is the definition of contrived. Some people just are not that into it.
So, with that said, here are the Cardinals choices for the Players’ Weekend jerseys, organized into categories...
John Gant: “GANT”
Jordan Hicks: “HICKS”
Mike Mayers: “MAYERS”
Tyler O’Neill: “O’NEILL”
Daniel Poncedeleon: “PONCEDELEON”
A shortened version of his name
Matt Carpenter: “CARP”
Paul DeJong: “PAULY”
Dexter Fowler: “DEX”
Greg Garcia: “GG”
Dakota Hudson: “DAK”
Miles Mikolas: “MIK”
Yadier Molina: “YADI”
Alex Reyes: “A.REY”
Adam Wainwright: “WAINO”
A twist on his actual name
Jack Flaherty: “FLARE”
Austin Gomber: “BIG G”
Jedd Gyorko: “JERK-OH”
Dominic Leone: “DOMINATOR”
Bud Norris: “BUDMAN”
Francisco Pena: “PEÑITA”
Chasen Shreve: “SHA-REEF”
Michael Wacha: “WACHAMOLE”
Tyler Webb: “WEBBY”
Appearance based, I assume?
Brett Cecil: “SQUINTS”
Marcell Ozuna: “THE BIG BEAR” (is this one here or....)
I am sure it has an interesting origin story I have yet to hear
Marcell Ozuna: “THE BIG BEAR” (here? or both??)
Harrison Bader: “TOTS” (Is this because Bader Tots? Because if so, I love it.)
Adolis Garcia: “EL BOMBI”
Jose Martinez: “CAFÉ”
Yairo Munoz: “PALITO”
Tyson Ross: “FREEWAY”
Luke Weaver: “DREAM”
It has an interesting origin story that I have heard
Carlos Martinez: “TSUNAMI” - The Wave of Perseverance story
Kolten Wong: “THE PEBBLE” - The Rock and The Pebble story
I feel like we can easily come up with something for Pondeleon. I am accepting suggestions.
2018 MLB Players Weekend: The best and worst nicknames | SBNation.com
Cardinals' nicknames for Players' Weekend | MLB.com
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