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Bespectacled ballplayer trolls baseball
February 24, 2014 4:26 PM   Subscribe

Major league baseball is doing something dumb. They asked fans to nominate a player from their team to be THE FACE OF MLB, whatever that means. Yankees fans picked Derek Jeter. Angels fans picked Mike Trout. Oakland A's fans picked a 4-eyed utility infielder named Eric Sogard. And he's winning.
posted by gilgamix (72 comments total) 3 users marked this as a favorite

 
Uh, can you explain what the issue is here? Baseball players shouldn't have glasses?
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 4:30 PM on February 24 [15 favorites]


Yeah. Not sure how this is "dumb."

Utility infielders are pretty boss.
posted by dogwalker at 4:32 PM on February 24 [10 favorites]


I wear glasses, so I suppose that means I'm dumb and undeserving of my face being anything but my face. I guess I could always go back to stripping...
posted by bizwank at 4:33 PM on February 24 [7 favorites]


I think it's just that he embodies NERDPOWER. I would like to see a nerd win a sports battle. How do I "vote" for him? Just a tweet with his hashtag?
posted by mathowie at 4:34 PM on February 24 [3 favorites]


They just don't often. (I think most get LASIK, apparently contacts and dust are problematic) Either way he's not the superstar MLB is looking for.
posted by gilgamix at 4:35 PM on February 24


Twitter. Apparently he's a four-eyed ginger, har har, etc.
posted by mochapickle at 4:35 PM on February 24


Professional athletes can qualify as nerds now?
posted by cmoj at 4:36 PM on February 24 [5 favorites]


Some background, via sfgate.
posted by incessant at 4:38 PM on February 24 [1 favorite]


Just to be clear, its the contest I think is dumb. Sogard's success is awesome.
posted by gilgamix at 4:41 PM on February 24 [3 favorites]


I think the dumb part is once again foolishly letting the public/internet game your contest to get a result you neither wished nor expected. No judgy reflection on spectacles, sensitive types. But be offended if you wish; it is the national pastime, after all. Being offended, I mean.
posted by umberto at 4:44 PM on February 24 [11 favorites]


Can I vote for the umpire with binoculars?
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 4:44 PM on February 24 [2 favorites]


Sports organizations are interested in pointless contests, catch the highlights at 11.
posted by GuyZero at 4:46 PM on February 24 [5 favorites]


Let's see... he's well within normal standards of male attractiveness, but the glasses and red beard make him stand out. He might well be the goofiest-looking candidate on the list, in which case of course the Internet would vote for him as the "face" of the sport.

Looking over the other faces on the roster, I have to ask: is the population of American major league baseball players really so... um... pale?
posted by Faint of Butt at 4:48 PM on February 24 [3 favorites]


In the late 1990s and early 00s, I watched the As lose a lot of important games because of lousy fielding. I can get behind appreciating a good defensive player, especially one who has the pretty-face/glasses-to-see priorities straight.
posted by gingerest at 4:49 PM on February 24


You all laugh, but Internet polls can kill. Justin Bieber's troubles started when he went to North Korea and picked up a meth habit.
posted by Nelson at 4:50 PM on February 24 [3 favorites]


Is it too late to rig this in favour of Rollie Fingers?
posted by Capt. Renault at 4:52 PM on February 24 [6 favorites]


Slate covering Rory Fitzpatrick almost making the NHL all-star game mentions other sports ballot stuffing campaigns. It's a wonder that Stephen Colbert isn't the winner of all of these contests.
posted by Gary at 4:52 PM on February 24 [3 favorites]


Really, "4-eyed"? That is your phrase, I take it?
posted by neroli at 4:54 PM on February 24 [6 favorites]


Kurt Rambis
The Hanson Brothers
Dominic "The Little Professor" DiMaggio
Kareem Fucking Abdul Jabbar
posted by Atom Eyes at 4:55 PM on February 24 [4 favorites]


How the fuck did Cutch not make it out of the first round? That's a 1,000 watt smile, right there.
posted by Capt. Renault at 4:56 PM on February 24 [2 favorites]


I already said bespectacled, and glasses-wearing doesn't roll off the tongue.
posted by gilgamix at 4:58 PM on February 24 [2 favorites]


I think the dumb part is once again foolishly letting the public/internet game your contest to get a result you neither wished nor expected.

In 1998, Time magazine opened their Person of the Year award to internet voting for the first time, and the votes were overwhelmingly for professional wrestler (and all-around mensch) Mick Foley. Time dismissed the Foley votes, but you would think that in the over fifteen years since then companies would have learned from this.
posted by Parasite Unseen at 4:58 PM on February 24 [3 favorites]


Hey, at least he's not fat. (This post is a little icky.)
posted by neroli at 5:00 PM on February 24 [6 favorites]


Looking over the other faces on the roster, I have to ask: is the population of American major league baseball players really so... um... pale?

Quick check: 7 out of 28 with Latino names; pretty close to the ~28% of MLB players of Latino heritage. I don't want to try to count the black players, because the whole Latino/Dominican/Black identity nexus is just fraught, and I don't really understand it. But MLB is only ~8% black, so I think there's pretty good representation here. No Asians, but only 2% of major leaguers are Asian, so there's only a 50/50 chance of getting one in a random draw of 28.

I don't know. I think it's maybe not that misrepresentative?
posted by mr_roboto at 5:01 PM on February 24 [2 favorites]


Looking over the other faces on the roster, I have to ask: is the population of American major league baseball players really so... um... pale?

Well, actually it is. Or, actually it is more brown (as in Spanish rice-ish brown).

The percentages of black ML baseball players have been steadily decreasing for years, and the fan bases of teams (hence voters) have as well.
posted by chuckiebtoo at 5:01 PM on February 24 [2 favorites]


Kareem, Rambis, Worthy!
posted by Room 641-A at 5:03 PM on February 24


His time at ASU overlapped a few when I was student, and follower of ASU baseball. I honestly though he was as good or better then Dustin Pedroia (a player for the Sun Devils that was drafted a few years earlier) who won an MVP in the AL.

Obviously draft picks, even very high ones, are more like to fail then succeed in MLB and to his credit just sticking in the MLB as a utility infielder is impressive but every time I come across his name I am bit disappointed he is not the star I predicted.
posted by Ommcc at 5:09 PM on February 24


I've tried in vain to think of a famous bespectacled quarterback.
I guess it's true what they say: Guys don't catch passes from men who wear glasses.
posted by Atom Eyes at 5:11 PM on February 24 [19 favorites]


Eric Sogard. Full name: Eric Sidney Sogard. Anagram of "Gridiron's 'eyes' cad." WAKE UP SHEEPLE! You think we can't tell the NFL is behind this?
posted by yoink at 5:13 PM on February 24 [2 favorites]


It has been so long since I heard anyone called four-eyes that I thought maybe just maybe someone actually had four eyes.
posted by srboisvert at 5:16 PM on February 24 [60 favorites]


Glasses are no big thing. In cricket, several of the top international players have worn glasses, such as Clive Lloyd (West Indies) and Daniel Vettori (New Zealand).

Though cricket arguably does beards better than any sport. From WG Grace (England) in the late 1800s through to South Africa's Hashim Amla today, cricket does beards and it does it well. Though I still think (maybe being a Worcestershire supporter I'm biased) that Mooen Ali has the potential to be one of the games greatest bearded International players. (Last summer after epic tonking of the Warwickshire attack)
posted by Wordshore at 5:16 PM on February 24 [2 favorites]


Yeah, I was pulling hard for Rory Fitzpatrick a couple of NHL All Star games ago. Hope this guy wins.
posted by notyou at 5:18 PM on February 24


It has been so long since I heard anyone called four-eyes that I thought maybe just maybe someone actually had four eyes.

The other two might not be on his head.
posted by yoink at 5:19 PM on February 24


Kareem Fucking Abdul Jabbar

I was really hoping bestplayerintheworld.com was Kareem's official website.
posted by indyz at 5:25 PM on February 24


I vote for #Butterstick.
posted by spitbull at 5:35 PM on February 24 [2 favorites]


Horace Grant
posted by Golden Eternity at 5:42 PM on February 24


This is a very weird post: am I the only one thinking "WTF is the problem? It's a popularity contest, and that guy is actually pretty hot"?
posted by pjm at 5:44 PM on February 24 [7 favorites]


The problem is that Adam Jones, the best tweeter in baseball and a handsome cuss, lost out to Buster Posey in the first round.
posted by escabeche at 5:49 PM on February 24 [1 favorite]


Utility infielders are pretty boss.

For real. I will not rest until Jose Oquendo has not only a spot in the Hall of Fame, but also a biopic starring Luis Guzman.
posted by Horace Rumpole at 5:56 PM on February 24 [3 favorites]


Looks like its time for me to dust off those twitter voting bots I wrote a few months ago and get them voting for this guy.
posted by z11s at 6:04 PM on February 24 [3 favorites]


How is King of Baseball Twitter Brandon McCarthy not winning? Or his hot and funny wife? That's the real injustice here.
posted by Ghostride The Whip at 6:12 PM on February 24 [1 favorite]


Kurt Rambis is my second-fav bb player (after MJ). How can you not root for a scrapper in shop glasses, most of whose game consisted in throwing elbows?
posted by professor plum with a rope at 6:21 PM on February 24


[Folks I think you've made your point about the 4-eyed thing being a misstep, please do not start tossing out other gratuitous insults to even the score.]
posted by jessamyn at 6:31 PM on February 24 [2 favorites]


I don't care so long as the Face of Baseball isn't David Wright and smirky face and his...ways.
posted by daisystomper at 6:36 PM on February 24


Eric Sogard is so cute. I just want to put him in my pocket and carry him around with me.

On the other hand, Buster Posey has the best name, and here is a picture of him trying to stuff a carrot in his ear or something. So it's a tough decision.

Of course, I haven't paid attention to baseball since Johnny Damon joined the Yankees and cut off his beautiful hair, so I'm probably the wrong person to have opinions about this contest. Or the right person, I'm not sure which.
posted by Metroid Baby at 6:49 PM on February 24 [5 favorites]


For real. I will not rest until Jose Oquendo has not only a spot in the Hall of Fame, but also a biopic starring Luis Guzman.

Holy hell would I watch this movie. Guzman is probably a little old for this, but man I would love it.
posted by dogwalker at 6:50 PM on February 24


I think we should name him Mister Splashypants.
posted by The otter lady at 6:53 PM on February 24 [3 favorites]


Oh man. He is up against Jose Bautista in the next round. Rabid online bay area fans vs rabid online Canadians? It will be a twitter vote battle for the ages
posted by thecjm at 7:03 PM on February 24


I was just thinking today that I've been finding guys with glasses pretty hot lately, like distractingly hot. Interesting.
posted by sweetkid at 7:19 PM on February 24


The cool thing is he's wearing Google Glass glasses, so technically, I think he's a five-eyes; plus he's the only player who can actually vote for himself while fielding.
posted by The Riker Who Mounts the World at 7:25 PM on February 24 [3 favorites]


incessant: Some background, via sfgate.
Sogard's teammates have his back, too. Jarrod Parker even had his dog, Millie, vote for Sogard in the last round.

"It's awesome - when he walks in, it's nice, everyone says, 'Hi, Face!' " Parker said. "He acts like he doesn't know what's going on, but he totally knows."
If this was supposed to be a joke at the expense of the guy, it seems like he's coming out ahead.
posted by filthy light thief at 8:03 PM on February 24


And here's a partial screencap of The Face of MLB as it is now, because the link in the OP is to the on-going vote, so the link won't make sense in a few days, or weeks at most. And here's the current bracket standing.
posted by filthy light thief at 8:11 PM on February 24


he's wearing Google Glass glasses

This is interesting. I wonder if this will be banned as it becomes more widespread.
posted by Night_owl at 8:14 PM on February 24


I would have voted for Luis Sojo were he still on a team, somewhere.
posted by grumpybear69 at 8:36 PM on February 24 [1 favorite]


Today is the day I learned Chuck Muncie has died.
posted by bukvich at 8:52 PM on February 24


If Sogard wins it all, Matt Garza is gonna be pissed.
posted by TheSecretDecoderRing at 9:03 PM on February 24 [1 favorite]


I don't think it's a joke at his expense so much as a joke because it's amusing to put up your no-name middle infielder against Jeter. The As are the same team that turned the Bernie Dance into a thing. Shenanigans are pretty much mandatory.
posted by Ghostride The Whip at 9:10 PM on February 24 [2 favorites]


Context regarding Garza's embarrassing Twitter meltdown directed towards Sogard's wife. I think his excuse ended up being that he was "just so competitive."
posted by TheSecretDecoderRing at 9:23 PM on February 24


Let's Go Oakland! Let's Go Oakland! Let's Go Oakland!...
posted by wherever, whatever at 9:34 PM on February 24 [2 favorites]


thumpthumpTHUMPATHUMP
posted by gingerest at 9:36 PM on February 24 [5 favorites]


I'm still disillusioned with online voting since that town refused to name its sewage treatment plant after Fred Durst.
posted by Pope Guilty at 10:52 PM on February 24 [2 favorites]


I think that town was just showing foresight because they knew there were celebrities, uh, in the pipeline, that would be much, much more deserving of having a sewage plant named after them.
posted by TheSecretDecoderRing at 11:35 PM on February 24


Though cricket arguably does beards better than any sport.
Somebody hasn't been watching the Six Nations (bonus rugby beards)

Anyway, it's not a joke on Sogard, it's a joke on the marketing arse who is currently worried that Sogard will win.
posted by fullerine at 2:36 AM on February 25


It's a pretty ridiculous "competition". The Brewers representative was Ryan Braun, fresh off his PED suspension. When you see Jose Bautista taking down Derek Jeter, something's wrong in your system (and I'm a Jays fan who voted a couple times for Jose...). Whoever has the most organized Twitter manager is going to win this.
posted by GhostintheMachine at 4:01 AM on February 25


The Royals screwed up by picking Alex Gordon instead of Billy "Country Breakfast" Butler. Everybody loves a DH who can't run worth a damn, plus he's really nice and has his own brand of barbecue sauce.
posted by dismas at 5:19 AM on February 25 [1 favorite]


OBVIOUSLY the Face of Major League Baseball is Elroy Face.
posted by Chrysostom at 6:40 AM on February 25 [2 favorites]


The team "representatives" are also voted on by fans. It doesn't have to be a current player, or a player at all.

By most measures, Jeter is easily the most well-known ballplayer other than A-Rod (and should be succeeded by Mike Trout, if things are just). But Jeter doesn't get very far in these things. A lot has to do with online presence and promotion.
posted by TheSecretDecoderRing at 8:14 AM on February 25


Shouldn't the face of baseball just be a syringe?
posted by Big_B at 10:40 AM on February 25


Sogard wears high socks. Jeter and Trout do not. Therefore Sogard deserves to win.
posted by The corpse in the library at 10:43 AM on February 25 [2 favorites]


Oh no, that might be wrong. I see he sometimes wears high socks and sometimes does the flappy-pants thing. I haven't followed baseball since the days of Luis Sojo (who I also would vote for), so I'm not up on current fashions.
posted by The corpse in the library at 10:44 AM on February 25


I'd vote for him because he wears his pants properly. Can't stand the trend for pants to go over the shoes.
posted by damnitkage at 10:46 AM on February 25 [1 favorite]


Ends up as David Wright.
posted by Chrysostom at 8:42 AM on February 28


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