- "A good name is better than precious ointment." -- Ecclesiastics, VII, I
- "Proper names are poetry in the raw. Like all poetry, they are untranslatable." -- W.H. Auden
What he said.
As fans, we bind ourselves to the game, not just to who wins and loses, but to the particular guys doing the winning and losing, and to the quirks and bits of brilliance that make that winning and losing so unmistakably their own and no one else's.
We connect with players in a dozen different ways. We fix on the subtle hitch in their swings, we key on the rhythm and angles of their running styles, and we mimic the way they wear their stirrups and caps. We carry pictures of a hitter's stance and a pitcher's delivery in our mind's eye for years after they've left the game.
|Check out the Page 2 All-Star team, and the All-Kruk team.|
Names count. We assign meaning to them. We figure a guy's destiny, for good and bad, is somehow tied to his handle. We believe there's mojo and magic in his name, we think it could be worth an extra couple of hits, or a little giddyup on a pitch.
And so it is that we present the nominees for the 2004 Page 2 All-Name team.
Thanks to all of you who've sent suggestions this past week. You've chosen wisely. It's a great bunch of names.
Now do us one more favor: Choose the best of the best at each position. Pick the one name that comes dripping with the most precious ointment. Select the one you think has the most untranslatable bit of poetry about it.
We thank you for your time and careful consideration.
Sixto Lezcano thanks you. Odibe McDowell thanks you.
And Bake McBride says, "right on."
Let's start behind the plate.
|Yorvit Torrealba||Adam Melhuse|
|Einar Diaz||A.J. Pierzynski|
Catcher: Not since Coco Crisp backed up Milton Bradley in Cleveland have two guys brought as much name to the same position on the same team as Yorvit and A.J. are doing now. You want to know why the Giants are in the thick of it? Sure, the layman says it's all Barry, but we know better ...
Eric Neel is a regular columnist for Page 2. His "On Baseball" column appears weekly.
Neel: All-Name Team -- 1st base
Neel: All-Name Team -- 2nd base
Neel: All-Name Team -- 3rd base
Neel: All-Name Team -- shortstop
Neel: All-Name Team -- left field
Neel: All-Name Team -- center field
Neel: All-Name Team -- right field
Neel: All-Name Team -- relief pitcher
Neel: All-Name Team -- starting pitcher