Ty Cobb, or T-Nutts, is remembered by family as a warm and gentle man.
ATLANTA – Descendants of former Tigers outfield great Ty Cobb were furious on Wednesday after a picture of current Tigers outfielder Torii Hunter kissing an alligator went viral this week, revealing in the process that Hunter’s Instagram user name is tnutts48 — a name Cobb’s living family members say is the rightful property of their beloved relative.
“It’s a disgrace,” said Augustus Virgil Cobb, the Hall of Famer’s grandson. “Hunter’s been a great player for Detroit. There’s no disputing that. But it’s an even bigger reason why he should have a sense of the club’s history, and how Ty Cobb was the one — and the only — T-Nutts.”
For his grand niece Tyra Ramona Cobb, the issue is a deeply personal one. “I remember when my great uncle used to sit us down and tell us stories from his days as a player. ‘Tell us this or that one, Uncle Ty,’ we’d say. And he’d go: ‘Tut-tut, children; we’re family. Everyone in this family calls me T-Nutts. We’ll have no formalities here.'”
“That’s always a memory I really cherished.”
A historian for the Tigers, longtime Detroit-area resident Dan Oglethorpe, confirms the historical veracity of the Cobb family claims. “Sure. Back then, basically everyone called Cobb T-Nutts. This is about 1909, 1910 when it started catching on. Cobb was T-Nutts and [Hall of Fame teammate Sam] Crawford was S-Dogg, or The Ess-Dogg.”
Credit to concerned reader Nick for asking the very important question: “Why is [Torii] Hunter’s Instagram account ‘T-Nutts’?
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