Walk-up music -- and its pitchin' cousin, entrance music -- is the unofficial soundtrack of baseball. The batter's box has become a jukebox, and most players put plenty of thought into the personal anthem that accompanies them to the plate or the mound.
"Once you find a song that's good and works, you don't change it," says Nationals closer Jonathan Papelbon, who strides in to Meek Mill's "Bout That Life." "It's like your wife. You put up with the good and the bad, just like she does with me."
So which player has the best current walkup song? We've paired off 32 of the top tunes currently used by players -- as determined by both their popularity and their pump-you-up power -- into a Walkup Music Tournament, aka The Whammys. Alas, two fan favorites are out of the running: Zack Greinke recently eschewed George Michael's 1980s slow-dance classic "Careless Whisper" and Shane Victorino left "Three Little Birds" behind in Boston. And while Prince Fielder certainly gets our attention with his air raid siren, it's not technically a song.
We're going to let you choose who has the best walk-up song in MLB in our #WalkupVote on Twitter. Voting continues through Sunday, when the Whammys winner will be announced on Sunday Night Baseball (ESPN, 8 p.m. ET).
Here were the Day 1 first-round matchups:
Led Zeppelin: "Kashmir" (Spotify)
Players: Chase Utley, Huston Street, Adam Liberatore, Ryan Lavarnway, Scott Kazmir, Jeff Samardzija
Utley: "My sister-in-law suggested the song. I listened to it and thought it was cool, so I went with it. It seemed to work and I didn't want to jinx anything, so I stuck with it. Sometimes, I don't even hear it, to be honest with you. I came up at a time when [walk-up music] was just kind of getting started. Now it seems like the first thing rookies do is request a song to come out to."
Jack White: "Lazaretto" (Spotify)
Players: Ian Kinsler, Neil Walker, Ryan Zimmerman
Kinsler: "I began using the song after meeting Jack White, who is a huge Tigers fan. He's an awesome guy. Very down to earth. [He's] not necessarily what you'd think when you see his image, but he's definitely a brilliant mind."
Flo Rida: "GDFR" (Spotify)
Players: Jake Lamb, Matt Joyce, Brian Dozier, Shane Greene, Bryan Shaw
Dozier: "I'm from Mississippi; I love country music. When I switched to rap this season, you should've heard the chaos on my Twitter feed, [people] saying they've never seen that side of me. They thought I was only country; but I say I'm part-country, part-gangsta."
Marky Mark & The Funky Bunch: "Good Vibrations" (Spotify)
Players: Anthony Rizzo, Alex Gordon
Rizzo: "I just like the song. It gets me pumped up. Now it's part of my routine to get me locked in."
2Pac: "All Eyez on Me" (Spotify | iTunes)
Players: David Ortiz, Matt Garza
Ortiz: "I listen to everything. When I'm driving and I hear some s--- that puts me in a good mood, I go from there. Right now I'm playing 2Pac, 'All Eyes on Me.' Sounds about right, doesn't it? All eyes on me? (Laughs)"
Silento's "Watch Me (Whip/Nae Nae)" advances in The Whammys with 54% of the vote.— Baseball Tonight (@BBTN) September 1, 2015
Johnny Cash: "God's Gonna Cut You Down" (Spotify)
Players: Joe Beimel, Glen Perkins, Drew Storen, Andrew Miller, Nathan Eovaldi, Cody Allen
Beimel: "When I was in Colorado, I came in three days in a row to face Lance Berkman. The last day I got him out, and on the play I had to run over and cover first. After the out, he looks at me and says, 'What is your entrance music?' I told him the song and the next year, he started using it when he came up to hit. I was like, 'Really, dude?' But I'm sticking with it. I'm more likely to change my socks than my entrance music."
With 61% of the vote, Ted Nugent's "Stranglehold" advances to the next round of The Whammys. #WalkupVote— Baseball Tonight (@BBTN) September 1, 2015
With 58% of the vote, Marc Anthony's "Vivir Mi Vida" advances to the next round of The Whammys. #WalkupVote— Baseball Tonight (@BBTN) September 1, 2015
Lynyrd Skynyrd: "Simple Man" (Spotify)
Players: Madison Bumgarner, Danny Espinosa, Jacob deGrom
deGrom: "I never picked anything in the minor leagues. I would always just tell them, 'Play whatever.' But then I didn't really like the song they were playing when I got called up. So I just decided to change to 'Simple Man.' I like slower music like that. It kind of calms me down, I guess. I don't want to get too amped up going into the first inning."
Meek Mill: "Bout That Life" (Spotify)
Players: Jonathan Papelbon, Adam Jones
Papelbon: "In the beginning, it's Ric Flair going off in Atlanta. And then Meek Mill, the rapper, goes into his song. I'm more interested in the Ric Flair part. When I come into the game, I want it blaring through the speaker system. It's like I'm stepping into the ring and I'm Ric Flair. I'm out there competing and I'm trying to body slam you, 'cuz it's go time."
Eric Church: "The Outsiders" (Spotify)
Players: David Phelps, Zach Duke, Cody Allen
Allen: "I'm a big country music fan and it's just an awesome song. I used to listen to it every morning on the way to the gym. It sounds good over the speakers, especially a certain part right in the middle of the song. I had a good year last year, so I rode with it."
Coming Thursday: The Steve SAX Division and the Bill SINGER Division.
What songs did we miss? Lets us know in the comments or on Twitter via the #WalkupVote hashtag.