Measuring “baseballness” can be tough, and I know that I often wish for a handy yardstick for, say, which of the dresses in my closet is the most baseball. I haven’t figured that one out yet, but here’s a handy tool to help you identify precisely how baseball your favorite band is.
Suggestions for added bonuses or strikes are welcome in the comments and I will update the quiz as I see fit. Of course, please also share your very important results. Post additions will be noted in italics.
Where was this band conceived?
- If New York City, St. Louis, Philadelphia, Boston, or Chicago, add 8 points.
- If any other North American city with a major league ball club*, OR the Dominican Republic, add 6 points.
- *If Tampa Bay, only add 4 points.
- For the Dominican Republic, Mexico, Cuba, Japan, or Montreal, add 3 points.
- American cities with a minor league baseball team, 2 points.
- American city with no baseball? No points.
- For Europe, Asian countries other than Japan, Australia, or Africa, subtract 2 points.
If there’s a cute story about how your band was formed that isn’t actually true, add 10 points.
Facial hair: Add 5 points for each mustache (sans beard), and 3 points for each beard.
What kind of drugs do you know or suspect that this band is involved with?
- Probably not applicable, but in case I’m missing something, add 10 points for any recorded steroid or HGH use.
- Add 5 points if any member of the band has had a alcohol-related DUI, arrest, death, or public incident.
- Add 4 Dock Ellis points for hallucinogen-influenced jams, double if you know they’ve performed on acid (or they say they have). [Hat tip to Doug Freeman]
- Add 3 late ‘70s points for known cocaine use.
- Add 1 C.J. Wilson point if there are any known straight-edge members.
- Subtract 2 points for recorded or strongly suspected heroin use.
Given the musical proclivities of baseball players themselves, add 3 points if your band is filed under “hip hop,” “country,” or “classic rock.” Subtract a point for anything that is typically referred to as “indie rock.”
Extra innings: add or subtract points based on the following:
- If a member of the band is a former or current professional baseball player, add 25 points. [Re: Pulley, as per commenter Resolution]
- For songs that actually mention or are about baseball, add 10 points.
- If your band has written or is known for performing any song that is often played at baseball stadiums, add 10 points.
- If they have performed the National Anthem at a baseball game, add 8 points.
- If a major league baseball player uses one of your favorite band’s songs as ‘walk out’ or ‘batting’ music, add 7 points.
- Repetitive, slow pacing: add 5 points.
- Math rock: add 5 points.
- Known participation in baseball fantasy leagues? Add 3 points. [HT: Sandy]
- Baseball card / memorabilia collectors earn their band 3 extra points. [HT: Olethros]
- Lyrics that strongly evoke history (see: The Decemberists): add 3 points.
- Women: subtract 1 point per woman in the band (courtesy of Ford Frick).
As for my own answer to this question, Pavement only earns 6 points. I’d like to thank Gary Young and the Stockton Ports for keeping me out of the red. That would have been embarrassing. Update: As Sandy points out in the comments, the song Major Leagues should have earned Pavement a 16, plus an added category for participation in fantasy leagues brings their total to 19. I am dumb but still happy that my favorite band is more baseball than I originally realized.