The Nickname Game

August 19

                On KNBR this morning Mychael (Big Urbs) Urban, subbing for Gary (Raddy, Uncle Gary ) Radnich brought up certain nicknames for Giants players.

                 This is always a hit with listeners, who like to chime in with their own ideas.  God bless them, I’m not drawing a paycheck without them, but their ideas usually aren’t good.  I maintain that most good nicknames come from the people who know the players best — their teammates.  Occasionally a writer or team broadcaster produces a gem, but normally it comes from the clubhouse.

                 Mychael mentioned that Eugenio Velez, previously known as The Pharoah due to his ancient countenance, is now being called Count Chocula. I’m not sure if Velez has signed off on this one. 

                 I told Mychael it sounded a bit insulting.  He brought up Pablo Sandoval and Kung Fu Panda, but that’s more of a happy nickname.  Count Chocula?  That’s going near the third rail unless players think he’s really sweet.

                Mind you, Count Chocula is one of the awesomest cereals ever, right up there with Captain Crunch and Cocoa Puffs.  At age ten there was no better way to start the day than with a sugar high.  I was like Ricochet Rabbit — bing, bing, bing-bing-bing!  Of course, the balloon payment was when I went to the dentist. 

               (  It reminds me of an episode when my kids were young.  My daughter, upset her friend hadn’t called to invite her for a sleepover, said “I hate life.”  My son, about five years old, asked, “do you like Golden Grahams?”   )

                Big Urbs is also pushing Matt “Shotgun” Cain, because Cain said one of three items he’d bring with him to a desert island was a shotgun.  That at least fits his country-boy image.  I could see Cain hunting squirrel in the Presidio after shutting down the Dodgers. 

                I’m not sure if that name has taken hold in the clubhouse, though.  It’s even worse if Cain is giving the nickname to himself, but I don’t think that’s the case.   Mychael wants me to include “Shotgun” Cain in my updates but I told him he’d have to give up some scrillage.  I have my principles.

               Not every player needs to have a nickname.  Some guys are just vanilla and nothing about them stands out.  To me, it has to occur naturally.  I’ll need to mull over the Velez and Cain nicknames as I watch Zeets take on the Reds tonight.  He might need B-Weez to save it for him.

One Response to “The Nickname Game”

  1. The Dodgers are such biters lately » Bay Area Sports Guy Says:

    […] L.A. Get an identity. Build your own team. Stop stealing GM’s, jazz hands and Count Choculas. It’s not a good look. The Giants and their fans are flattered by your recent attentions […]

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