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Ranking the Marlins Players Weekend nicknames

The most important part about Players Weekend is the nicknames on the jerseys. Let’s rank them.

Photo from @Marlins on Twitter.

The Marlins, along with every other team in baseball, will participate in Players Weekend when they take on the Padres at Marlins Park August 25-27.

For this brand new Players Weekend, Major League Baseball is allowing players to wear bright, colorful jerseys with nicknames on the back that will look something like this.

This is nothing new for the Marlins, who wear flashy uniforms every day, but the nickname aspect has given the players a chance to express themselves in a game that still looks down upon that. So, let’s rank the nicknames.

25. JT (J.T. Realmuto)

JT, this is literally just your first name. Be better.

24. TK (Tom Koehler)

Well, this is awkward. Does anyone think Koehler will be in the big leagues by August 25?

T-20. Yeli (Christian Yelich), Elli (Brian Ellington), Taz (Junichi Tazawa), Ichi (Ichiro)

Ok, these are a little better than using your first name, but it’s not much better. Just shortening your last name to use as a nickname is not creative at all, and I don’t really even care if that is your actual nickname. (This will probably be the only time I drag Ichiro on this site).

19. Bear (Kyle Barraclough)

Barraclough messed this one up in two ways. First of all, his last name just begs for him to use “Bear Claw”, but he instead just went with “Bear.” Second of all, he’s basically just copying Marcell Ozuna’s nickname.

18. Dietz (Derek Dietrich)

We all love Dietrich, but when ranking for creativity, this one just doesn’t cut it. It’s a little better than shortening the nickname, but I was really looking for some more flare from the guy who ran around shirtless after a walk off hit last season.

T-13. D-Mac (Dustin McGowan), T-Mo (Tyler Moore), Pratt (Martin Prado), Miggy Ro (Miguel Rojas), Witty (Nick Wittgren)

Again, this is just kind of lazy work from McGowan, Moore, Prado, Rojas and Wittgren. These are solid on-field nicknames, but with some of the meaning behind the nicknames for the other Marlins, these guys were lucky to crack the top 15.

12. Steady Eddie (Edinson Volquez)

This is solid nickname for Volquez, but there’s one problem — it’s already taken. MLB Hall of Famer and eight-time all-star Eddie Murray held the same nickname in the 80s and 90s. No knock against Volquez, but I don’t think his career will quite live up to Murray’s, who has a stronghold on the “Steady Eddie” nickname.

11. Weigh-In (Wei-Yin Chen)

Here’s your weekly reminder that Chen does still in fact play for the Marlins. On the surface, this nickname seems pretty easy, but I respect the subtle humor. I like to think Chen went in for a physical and the doctor was like, “weigh in, Chen.”

10. The Big Bear (Marcell Ozuna)

Ozuna’s nickname is only down as far as No. 9 because it’s the one we’ve always known and loved. Unfortunately, Ozuna is penalized here for already having a solid nickname.

9. Cruz (Giancarlo Stanton)

I actually thought it would have been funny for Stanton to put “Mike” on the back of his jersey, but “Cruz” works too. It’s part of his full name — Giancarlo Cruz-Michael Stanton.

8. El Nueve (Jose Urena)

According to the Sun-Sentinel’s Tim Healey, this nickname goes back to Urena’s childhood when his friends called each other El Nueve (The Nine) to greet one another. The cool childhood throwback gets this one into the top 10.

7. Varis Strange (Dee Gordon)

Gordon combined part of his full name (Devaris) with the last name of his late mother (Strange) to give Players Weekend some true meaning. Well done, Devaris.

6. Papito (Justin Bour)

Rojas reportedly gave Bour this nickname in Spring Training. It translates to “Little Daddy”, and would be higher on the list, except for the fact that Bour seems more like a “Big Daddy” to me.

5. Rojo (Dan Straily)

I assume this nickname comes from Straily’s red beard, but I also have a conspiracy theory for this one. Does Straily still want to play for the Reds? Does he want the Marlins to trade him back to Cincinnati for Luis Castillo? Feel free to go crazy in the comments section.

4. Unicorn (Brad Ziegler)

Healey writes that Bour gave Ziegler this nickname during Spring Training because he rarely ever pitched. He didn’t appear in a game until March 12 because he wanted to rest his arm at age 37, but of course Bour had fun with it.

3. Vanimal (Vance Worley)

This has been Worley’s nickname for a while, but it is phenomenal and needs to be protected at all costs. He’s been a starter/long reliever for most of career, but this nickname would be really great if he ever became a closer. I know I wouldn’t want to face the “Vanimal” in the 9th inning.

2. Jarlin the Marlin (Jarlin Garcia)

It was very difficult not to put this at No. 1 because I feel like we at Fish Stripes played a part in coining this nickname for Garcia back in June.

So, you’re welcome, baseball world. On another note, it’s taking all the willpower in the world for me to not buy this jersey.

Screenshot from

1. Dad (A.J. Ellis)

A.J. Ellis is just wearing “Dad” on the back of his jersey. I don’t think I’ve ever been happier about anything in my entire life. I mean, the 36-year-old catcher is basically the dad among this fairly-young Marlins lineup, and he apparently has some good dad jokes as well. THAT is how you do Players Weekend.