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Don Wakamatsu has purty handwriting

Jul 16, 2012, 9:49 AM EDT

Don Wakamatsu

It’s always cool to find something beautiful in a place where aesthetics aren’t at all required. Take the Blue Jays’ lineup cards, filled out by bench coach Don Wakamatsu:

Of all the skills required for a baseball career, no one ever mentions calligraphy. And yet Toronto Blue Jays bench coach Don Wakamatsu has found a way to stand out from the field with his elegant handwriting.

The Blue Jays’ lineup cards rendered by the 49-year-old former catcher are miniature works of art, transforming the list of each team’s players posted on the dugout wall into an object of unlikely beauty.

Pics of the lineup card can be seen in the linked article.

I think maybe he’s overselling the “it encourages people to pay attention to detail” angle — most ballplayers probably don’t make that connection — but I’m a big fan of art for art’s sake, so this is really cool.

  1. cur68 - Jul 16, 2012 at 9:58 AM

    So that’s who’s been doing that, eh? Just about every game viewers get a look at that lineup card and it is invariably, as the headline says, purty. Another dugout artist is Omar Vizquel. He draws on baseballs. Those Beaver Wrestlers. Not only one of the best hitting lineups in all baseball but dang talented, too.

    • nbjays - Jul 16, 2012 at 1:47 PM

      I’ve been wondering myself who the calligrapher was. Didn’t think it was Farrell. I wonder, did Wakamatsu do this when he was managing in Seattle?

  2. proudlycanadian - Jul 16, 2012 at 11:08 AM

    The Jays hitters obviously appreciate that detail. After 89 games the top 3 run scoring teams in baseball are Texas (450 in a notorious hitters park), Boston (445 as a lot of runs are scored at Fenway), and Toronto (445). The Jays hitters will get a chance to pad their run totals in NY and Boston this week. Once they land a starting pitcher or two, look out!

    • hammyofdoom - Jul 16, 2012 at 11:17 AM

      I cant remember exactly, but hasnt the Toronto ballpark been playing kinda small lately in general? I thought I read/heard something about that but I cant be sure

      • cur68 - Jul 16, 2012 at 11:44 AM

        To some degree it depends on the roof. If its closed, then the park’s very hitter friendly. Open, then the ball flies a fair bit, depending on the wind, and its extremely hitter friendly.

      • proudlycanadian - Jul 16, 2012 at 12:01 PM

        Can’t be sure! Is it the Jay’s or the stadium? The last 3 games have bee 0 to 1, 10 to 8 and 3 to 0.

  3. natstowngreg - Jul 16, 2012 at 12:12 PM

    Beautiful indeed. Raises a couple of thoughts.

    Once the beautiful lineup card is posted in the Jays’ dugout, does the manager run the artwork by scribbling lineup changes? That would be a shame.

    The Nats’ team store used to sell an assortment of game-used lineup cards. The Jays’ team store might make a few bucks selling such high-quality cards (even if the manager marks them up).

    • cur68 - Jul 16, 2012 at 12:22 PM

      Especially if the manager marks them up, IMO.

    • proudlycanadian - Jul 16, 2012 at 12:29 PM

      Wakamatsu makes the lineup changes himself.

    • proudlycanadian - Jul 16, 2012 at 12:32 PM

      As the story indicates, many of the cards are auctioned with the proceeds to benefit charity. Some go to players. Even Verlander got one when he no hit the Jays.

      • natstowngreg - Jul 16, 2012 at 12:48 PM

        Excellent.

  4. stabonerichard - Jul 16, 2012 at 12:21 PM

    Not quite as purty as butt nekkid Jose Bautista, but a fine effort nonetheless.

    • cur68 - Jul 16, 2012 at 12:22 PM

      ‘boner, seek help. Before its too late.

  5. seeinred87 - Jul 16, 2012 at 12:42 PM

    I’ve always appreciated stuff like that because my handwriting is so atrocious.

  6. townballblog - Jul 16, 2012 at 7:11 PM

    I’m suddenly embarrassed.

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