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Hey, look at the relief pitcher with the girly backpack!

Sep 1, 2011, 4:00 PM EDT

My Little Pony

The New York Times has a story today about the trend of making the low-man on the bullpen totem pole carry the bullpen supplies in some children’s backpack.  Usually a girl’s backpack with My Little Pony or something on it.  It’s a hazing thing, of course.  Two observations:

First, I hate that the alpha and omega of baseball hazing seems to be equating ballplayers with little girls.  That’s the joke, see. No ballplayer would want to be a little girl!  Ugh, grow up.

Second, my eye-rolls notwithstanding, they’re probably not necessary. Because as everyone knows, the minute the New York Times picks up on a trend, it means that the trend has already passed.  I’m sure they’re on to something totally new now.

  1. ThisIsBaseball - Sep 1, 2011 at 4:05 PM

    And when I saw them wearing it, I thought the backpacked belong to the players daughter or something.

  2. klbader - Sep 1, 2011 at 4:06 PM

    It’s not hazing. These relief pitchers are just bronies. Nothing wrong with that.

  3. kopy - Sep 1, 2011 at 4:07 PM

    You’re right about the New York Times. I don’t live in Minnesota anymore, but when I did, the Twins did this. They would buy one new backpack for each year based on whatever was “in”, i.e. Dora, SpongeBob, etc., and they’ve been doing it for years. Unfortunately, despite NYT’s “findings”, this has been going on for so long it will probably stay around due to tradition instead of fading away like a trend.

    On the plus side, it’s so common that people don’t really see it as hazing much anymore. It’s just funny.

    • kopy - Sep 1, 2011 at 4:10 PM

      I’m not trying to suggest the Twins started it. In fact, I’d be really surprised if they did, which is just further testament to how long this has probably been going on.

      • Bryz - Sep 1, 2011 at 4:23 PM

        I don’t even consider it humiliating or hazing. Hell, when the Twins acquired Jon Rauch in ’09, I found it hilarious when the camera crew showed all 6’11”, 290 lbs. of him digging through a pink Barbie backpack.

  4. Jonny 5 - Sep 1, 2011 at 4:14 PM

    I thought they just liked pink. Ya know the Rookies… What if they add a feather scarf for flair?

    • bloodysock - Sep 1, 2011 at 4:40 PM

      Yeah, the Rockies need more flair.

      • Bryz - Sep 1, 2011 at 7:14 PM

        A minimum 15 pieces of flair.

      • jimbo1949 - Sep 1, 2011 at 10:07 PM

        must be at least 15 pieces of fleer in the backpack.

      • Jonny 5 - Sep 2, 2011 at 7:56 AM


  5. clydeserra - Sep 1, 2011 at 4:19 PM

    When Huston Street was a rookie and the A’s closer, they made him bring the water in a Huston Street Give away kids backpack.

  6. - Sep 1, 2011 at 4:23 PM

    The Royals pen has been doing this too.

    If I was a rookie in MLB regardless of position I would carry the pink backpack regardless of what others thought, because you know I’d be an MLBer MFer!

  7. goawaydog - Sep 1, 2011 at 4:26 PM

    “I have no shame in wearing the backpack, my take on the backpack is as long as I have the backpack, I have a seat at the table, so I am happy to wear it” Sergio Romo, SF Giants

  8. Tim's Neighbor - Sep 1, 2011 at 4:56 PM

    And if a fraternity on a college campus does this, hazing takes a whole new meaning. I hate this double standard.

    • kellyb9 - Sep 2, 2011 at 8:05 AM

      Any organization is going to have their rituals. Although, there’s a big distinction between this level of hazing and the kind that goes on at college campuses. I believe people will always find a new way to tease the new guy regardless, so I hope this type of hazing catches on.

  9. mississippimusicman - Sep 1, 2011 at 5:17 PM

    What happens when Eri Yoshida gets picked up by the Mariners or somebody? Do they make her wear a GI Joe backpack? The day will eventually come when somebody (probably not Yoshida) makes us answer that question.

  10. 18thstreet - Sep 1, 2011 at 5:34 PM

    Spoken like the father of a little girl.

    Signed, the father of a little girl

  11. tribester - Sep 1, 2011 at 6:04 PM

    First of all, and most importantly, does that backpack have hair? Really?

    Otherwise, while I dislike the implication of seeking out the pinkest backpack they can find, I think as long as it’s just harmless fun and the reliever doesn’t get stressed or anything, it’s a nice trend. Even with that article trying to take an anti-backpack stance, it didn’t seem like the quotations were overwhelmingly against the trend. Instead, it’s earning a spot in a harmless way that may or may not involve too much pink.

    I also enjoy that the writer had to mention that the boa came from San Francisco.

  12. sasquash20 - Sep 1, 2011 at 10:02 PM

    Only a tinker bell who got bullied for being a little girl wouldn’t find any humor in this.

  13. jimbo1949 - Sep 1, 2011 at 10:13 PM

    yet the only time somebody gets violent is when they try to macho it up

  14. goldensombrero3000 - Sep 1, 2011 at 11:51 PM

    I just thought I was this this hip thing that I don’t even know about, wow.

  15. jwbiii - Sep 2, 2011 at 2:11 AM

    Sometimes these silly hazing rituals are useful.

  16. Reggie's Bush - Sep 2, 2011 at 9:57 AM

    Teased much Mr. Calcaterra?

    Big deal, pink backpacks, get over it.

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