Skip to content

So, what would be your walk-up music?

May 14, 2010, 11:34 AM EDT

Record.jpgI’m partial to some nice organ music at the ballpark, but I realize that’s quickly going the way of the dodo. Nowadays you whippersnappers like your bebop and “rock and roll” and all of that noise. In the unlikely event that God and fate keep you from becoming juvenile delinquents as a result of listening to that devil’s music, I suppose it’s well and good.

So these days the ballplayers have their theme music.  This AP story notes that this season a number of guys — including Mark Teahen, Troy Tulowitzki, Nick Johnson and Cameron
Maybin — have gone the ironic route, playing Justin Bieber and Miley Cyrus songs as they come to bat.  That’s the kind of thing that’s good for a chuckle at first, but like the “Atari” shirt you wore to that college party back in 1992 and your brief love affair with swing music in 1997, it’s the kind of thing that wears out fast. Such is the nature of irony.

But it has brought the subject of walkup music back to my attention.  It’s always a fun bar conversation: if you were a major league hitter — or a big time closer — what song would you come out to?  It’s a tougher subject than you might think. Sure, Roger Daltry’s yell from “Won’t Get Fooled Again” seems awesome, but when you figure that you’re gonna strikeout or hit a weak dribbler six or seven out of every ten times at bat you can imagine that the fiery inspiration of it all may soon hang like an albatross around your neck.  And that’s before you even get into the “aw, crap, they use it on “CSI” now, so it’s played-out” factor of it all.

Maybe something steady and driving is better than all that catharsis. “Walk the Line” may work, but you risk being called out as a hipster for such an obvious choice.  Maybe something that burns more than rocks like, say, the intro to “Sweet Emotion” or whatever the hell that Alan Parsons Project song was that the Chicago Bulls used to use.  All have their good points, all have their flaws. I’m not decided on what I’d use. I’m kind of partial to the keyboard intro to “What’d I say” by Ray Charles, but my mind changes on this subject quite frequently.  I was particularly inspired by Chris Carter’s use of Hulk Hogan’s old theme, “Real American,” during his debut with the Mets the other night.  Wrestlers always got that stuff right.

I’m gonna throw it open. Tell me in the comments: if you’re a ballplayer what’s your walkup and/or coming out of the bullpen to lock down a save music?  And no, you can’t use “Grab them Cakes.”  I’m reserving the rights to use that one for myself.

127 Comments (Feed for Comments)
  1. Merkle Boner - May 14, 2010 at 4:28 PM

    I thought long and hard about this a while back when my friend told me his was “Hungry Like the Wolf” and I came up with a definitive number one and a backup.
    “Danger Zone” Kenny Loggins
    backup: “Search and Destroy” Iggy Pop

  2. Cheap Seat Chronicles - May 14, 2010 at 4:58 PM

    “The Game” by Motorhead

  3. scatterbrian - May 14, 2010 at 5:43 PM

    You don’t have to give it up, it’s just that song takes about 1:30 to really get going. But if you’re doing the 7th inning stretch, add a provision that the umpires have to run around the field wearing animal masks like in the video.

  4. tulsaslide - May 14, 2010 at 6:08 PM

    For a couple of summers my brother and I did a ballpark organ/press announcer duo for the independent minor league team in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. The first few games of the season were always fun, since the players hadn’t alerted us to their choices for walk-up music. Sharing Craig’s distaste for the overemphasis on hair rock and hip hop, we played a lot of 60’s and 70’s soul-funk (“Machine Gun” by the Commodores, “Knock On Wood” by Eddie Floyd, “Get Ready” by the Temptations, etc.). Even small-town Midwestern crowds sing along with old soul music.
    The first baseman one year was a kindred spirit. By midseason he simply requested the sounds of the ocean. He led the league in triples and strikeouts by batter, so I’m not sure it’s wise to draw any conclusions about performance from the walk-up music.
    The best part: our GM forbade us from playing “Centerfield” by John Fogerty. So as the team took the field we played “Everybody Ready” by Action Figure Party. Absolutely obscure, but it’s one of those songs that sounds familiar…

  5. Nico - May 14, 2010 at 6:12 PM

    As a Twins fan, I find Jason Kubel’s use of “Sabotage” by the Beastie Boys to be pretty awesome.
    I think a song I’d like is the theme to the Sopranos. Not sure what its called, though.

  6. Al - May 14, 2010 at 6:14 PM

    Anything by SLEIGH BELLS.
    21st cent. jock jams.

  7. zach - May 14, 2010 at 6:28 PM

    best so far…

  8. Ernie - May 14, 2010 at 7:14 PM

    Melvins “Honey Bucket”

  9. Tony Abbott - May 14, 2010 at 7:29 PM

    “Shit Luck” by Modest Mouse, “The National Anthem” by Radiohead, “So What’cha Want?” by the Beastie Boys, or “Calm Like A Bomb” by Rage Against the Machine.

  10. Leon - May 14, 2010 at 8:01 PM

    Seems like ‘Don’t Fear the Reaper’ is as good as any reliever song going now. And I don’t know what it’s called, but John Cena’s entrance music on RAW would get me pumped to hit!

  11. Eddie Cicotte - May 14, 2010 at 9:18 PM

    For a reliever I would go with Alice In Chains “Man in the Box” After all, until the pitch, that is all they are.

  12. KR - May 14, 2010 at 10:24 PM

    Was just thinking about this the other day. Probably “Tom Sawyer” by Rush; I see someone else had the same idea.

  13. cantankerous Frank - May 15, 2010 at 10:29 AM

    Hitter Meatloaf – two out of three ain’t bad
    Closer Commodores- Brick house. Yes that would distract the hitters with the randomness.

  14. Will - May 15, 2010 at 11:21 AM

    For a d-backs closer, how about “Union of the Snake” by Duran Duran?

  15. Amol - May 15, 2010 at 11:49 PM

    In Nick Johnson’s defense, I seem to recall reading that the Miley Cyrus wasn’t so much “ironic” as “requested by Johnson’s daughter”. Personally, I’m going with the fourth movement of Dvorak’s Symphony from the New World.

  16. Loztralia - May 16, 2010 at 5:20 PM

    If anyone on my team used a stereotypical hard rock number I don’t think I’d be able to resist the temptation to go for “Sex Farm” by Spinal Tap.

  17. Amanda - May 17, 2010 at 12:08 PM

    List of Demands – Saul Williams
    Supermassive Black Hole – Muse

  18. YourMom - May 19, 2010 at 6:39 PM


  19. YourMom - May 19, 2010 at 6:47 PM

    As a hitter, I’d choose “Battle without Honor or Glory” from the Kill Bill soundtrack. It’s the music where Uma Thurman goes bananas on the Crazy 88’s in the club (no, not the Japanese girl group doing that stupid Vonage song either).
    As a closer, even though my Pappy-bon screwed up Monday night, I’d choose “Shipping Up to Boston” or “The Warrior’s Code” by the Dropkick Murphys.
    My Sox may suck, but I still love them. So there.

  20. Stallion John - May 21, 2010 at 6:23 PM

    It may be above but I didn’t see it there -so
    For a SP or RP –
    It’s got to be –
    ” Another One Bites The Dust ! ”
    With a close 2nd to WAR by Hendrix.

  21. Stallion John - May 21, 2010 at 6:27 PM

    Just thought of this one –
    Rock You Like A Hurricane

  22. Wade - May 24, 2010 at 9:38 PM

    Batting – Metallica’s version of Queen’s “Stone Cold Crazy”
    Closer – Theme from Monty Python’s Flying Circus (Sousa’s “The Liberty Bell”).

  23. RaysfanAnna - Jun 3, 2010 at 9:33 AM

    Love that pick. The Rays, having the only dome left in MLB, should steal your idea.
    Sabotage is taken, so I would use the chorus in Spaz by N.E.R.D.

  24. UticaBen - Jun 3, 2010 at 1:22 PM

    Where the streets have no name- U2
    Bad Scene, Everyones Fault- Jawbreaker
    Final Countdown- Europe
    You Gotta Go- Mighty Mighty Bosstones

  25. Faiaz - Jun 9, 2010 at 7:09 PM

    But hold on cuz the driver of the Bentley is a pro.

Leave Comment

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Not a member? Register now!

Top 10 MLB Player Searches
  1. G. Springer (2774)
  2. H. Ramirez (2738)
  3. G. Stanton (2695)
  4. M. Teixeira (2472)
  5. J. Baez (2457)
  1. S. Strasburg (2456)
  2. B. Crawford (2424)
  3. C. Correa (2397)
  4. H. Pence (2365)
  5. B. Harper (2159)