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MLB Photo Day is Here, Embrace the Awkwardness

MLB photo day is upon us once again. Thanks to an excruciating amount of awkwardness, giddiness, and facial hair, we were delivered the usual accidental excellence. You’ll be quite familiar with some of the players and managers included, while others you may not. That’s the beauty of this exercise. There are simply no qualifications here other than to be generally baffling in some capacity. So please give a warm welcome to a few of our new favorite characters in Major League Baseball.

Managing the New York Yankees is apparently more stressful than being President of the United States, because Joe Girardi looks like a frostbitten raccoon that’s been dead for weeks. Given the decaying looks of Girardi, it only seemed fair to put someone so filled with life alongside him to balance things out. The first name that came to mind was obviously Nats pitcher Matt Purke, who looks like a slim Joba Chamberlain after making love to a bottle of quaaludes. But now to seriously liven things up, feast your eyes on Twins pitcher Andrew Albers, who chose to smile for all of Minnesota.

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Fascinating White Sox DH Adam Dunn is either half hobo/half pro ball player, or just a retired clown. You decide. For Mariners pitcher Chance Ruffin, MLB photo day falls just below coveted activities of “giving a shit” and “giving a fuck,” and we should all love him for it. And our old friend Chad Gaudin appears to have every orange pube in the world affixed to his face.

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Diamondbacks starter Ian Kennedy is a strange hybrid of Hans Klopek and an endearing creature yet to be discovered by scientists. Or is he just a white Mariano Rivera? Fascinating. Poor Braves third base coach Brian Snitker appears as though he just bumped into Kennedy or any number of these clowns, while a very distant Gerald Laird looks like he’s been accused of something awful that he’s slowly coming to grips with.

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Yes, it’s safe to assume that Arizona’s Special Assistant to the GM, Mark Weidemaier, is constantly aboard a runaway roller-coaster. Upon seeing the center photo of mesmerizing catcher J. R. Towles and the accompanying birds happily perched on his jersey, I’m quite positive Towles should never be allowed to play for another team again. Just look at this guy. This is true fate at work here, he’s a Cardinal for life. While there are a number of candidates that qualify for “the shocker” award each and every year, I think we can all agree that Harold Baines went above and beyond the call of duty.

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Giants All-Star catcher Buster Posey was kind enough to pose for photographers while holding a proportionately accurate mold of *******. Pretty good sport, that Posey.

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There are probably many of you who aren’t very familiar with Indians reliever Joe Martinez, and I’m going to venture to guess that Joe Martinez isn’t all that up to speed with Joe Martinez. Fun Fact: If Jose Mijares flipped his chin-strap beard upwards, he would find himself with a serviceable mustache. And we’re not exactly sure how Uncle Rico worked his way into the Rangers photoshoot, but we assume he’ll be bringing heat coming out of the ‘pen.

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At left is Mike Pelfrey on photo day in 2011. At right is Mike Pelfrey on photo day in 2013. At present is yet another Mets joke served up on a depressing platter.

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I have absolutely no idea what Twins reliever Tim Wood did, but you if happen to know, don’t ever, ever let Tim Wood find out. Speaking of fierce forces, all Tyler Clippard needs here is a little blood on his neck and he’s a focused Hanson brother trying to listen to the National Anthem. And then there’s good old Jason Motte, the Cards closer who looks like he openly farts at dinner and drinks beer out of a Rubbermaid trash can.

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Josh Collmenter’s face-muff, a staunch reminder to always trim, ladies.

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And now for our finisher, which is of course a Jayson Werth beard attack. The hairy fellow recently arrived to the Nationals spring training facility after a spirited stay in the Ewok Village with Medicine Man. Only the likes of Chewbacca and Bruno Sammartino could hang with this furry bastard and not feel humbled. Take a bow, Mr. Werth.

[Photos via USA Today Sports Images]

Previously: NBA Media Day 2012, in Pictures
Previously: NBA Media Day 2011, in Pictures
Previously: 2011 MLB Photo Day is Here
Previously: NBA Media Day 2010, in Pictures

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