Stop it, America. Just stop it.
When the baseball loving free world isn’t busy trying to figure out which Hall of famer Trout best compares to, they are busy trying to fabricate a nickname for the phenom.
The Millville Meteor? Maybe if it was 1947.
The Franchise? How very original.
The Natural? Original to the nth degree, but also the nickname of the best player of the Angels’ top rival. Way to research.
The Flying Fish? Doesn’t exactly roll off the tongue, but so begins the ichthyoid theme, because, you may not realize this, his last name is the name of a fish, you guys!
The Star Fish? Yes, he’s a star. Yes, he has a fish name. Yes, a starfish is a fish. No, a starfish is not a trout.
The Fish That Saved Anaheim? Clever, but perhaps too obscure.
The Kingfish? Now you’re not even trying.
No offense intended to anyone who came up with these suggestions, but as a whole they stink. And there is one common thread that unites all these ideas: they are contrived. Not that I am the arbiter of all things nickname, but the best kind of nicknames, the ones that stick, develop organically. They aren’t the result of brainstorming and forced usage. That’s why Dream Weaver and K-Rod worked but Voodoo, El Manejo or any of the multitude of nicknames Rex Hudler tried to bestow upon Ervin Santana didn’t.
Some guys get nicknames. Some guys don’t. And just because a player is great doesn’t mean he needs a nickname. If it is meant to be, it will be. You just have to give it time, after all, the kid has only been in the bigs for half a season. Let’s at least hold off on forcing a nickname until Trout is old enough to legally drink.
Or maybe, we can just leave it alone entirely. What a novel idea, right? If you think about it, most of the nicknames are based less on his ability and more on the fact that his last name is Trout. So, why can’t he just be “Trout” and nothing more? One of the goals of a nickname is to bestow someone with a moniker that makes them uniquely identifiable. What’s more identifiable than Trout?
If you really feel strongly about the nickname you chose for him, fine, call him that. Just don’t try and make me call him that. Besides, it isn’t like I can stop you. Unless I know where you live, in which case, I will totally come to your house slap you upside the head with an actual trout.
Or maybe I am the one that needs to shut up. When it comes to matters like this I can never rule out that I have prematurely turned into a cranky old man.
Photo courtesy of Daylife.com