Nickname Seeks Player: “I Am Not Afraid of You and I Will Beat Your Ass”

Our ongoing quest, in the manner of a noble knight-errant, is to assign cool nicknames to players rather than indulge in the tired paradigm of assigning cool players nicknames. Before we launch the latest installment, however, a trip through our Hall of Honouur, which is so stately, so regal, so much itself a celebration of the Norman Conquest, that an extra British-English unstressed “u” is required for proper spelling. …

Bad Miracle” – Wily Mo Peña
Captain Black Tobacco” – John Danks
$45 Couch” – Yuniesky Betancourt
Liván Hernández” – Liván Hernández
Frog in the Pot” – Carlos Zambrano
Aqua Velva Man” – Chase Utley
Victorian Sex Rebel” – John Axford
Good, Round Friend” – Prince Fielder

And the nickname now hanging perilously in the balance? It’s “I Am Not Afraid of You and I Will Beat Your Ass”!

Denotations, Connotations, Implications, Intimations, and Incriminations:

While this scribe is something of a Yo La Tengo agnostic, there’s no disputing the heaven-sent, maiden-kissed, dandy-fondled perfection of this album title. It would, I attest from atop the pile of my basest urges, make a fine, good nickname.

What does it mean? It means an absence of fear where fear should dwell. It means defiance of human — nay, animal — bounds and limits. It means that there is a very certain type of shit that, anymore, he’s not going to take.

I am afraid of you and it is thus deducible that I will not beat your ass. But this Player to be Nicknamed? He is not afraid of you and he will very much beat your beautiful ass.

Prototypes from Baseball’s Gauzy Past:

Billy Martin surmounted modest skills and a slight build to carve out a major-league career and sucker-punch scores of legions of many. Jackie Robinson was courage and noble bravado writ awesome (if, that is, we wish to take this in a direction that’s actually inspiring on the merits rather than, you know, rich with amusements). David Eckstein was certainly unafraid. He wasn’t going to beat anyone’s ass, but, really, the willingness and confidence to beat an ass is more important than actual beating of asses, even beautiful ones such as yours.

Guiding, Determinative Query:

What current major-league player should be nicknamed “I Am Not Afraid of You and I Will Beat Your Ass”?

The convention floor, which is larded with asses — consenting asses — looking to be beaten, is now open for nominations …




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69 Responses to “Nickname Seeks Player: “I Am Not Afraid of You and I Will Beat Your Ass””

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  1. Josh says:

    This screams Brett Lawrie.

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  2. pbs says:

    So, I guess Elijah Dukes is ineligible … Ryan Theriot has the Eckstein factor, and there’s always the jockey Pedroia. But after careful consideration, I gotta go with Stephen Strasburg. If you’ve ever watched him pitch, it is quite clear that he is NOT afraid of you. And, oh yes, he WILL beat your ass – and make you look silly while he does it.

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  3. Johnny says:

    Nyjer Morgan.

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  4. Todd says:

    Ryan Roberts – neck tattoos a requirement – also eyleliner

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  5. Anon says:

    Jon Rauch.

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  6. Intimidation. That is key. Also yelling. Which is why I suggest Chris Carpenter.

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    • I’m unconvinced Chris Carpenter would kick anyone’s ass. I feel like he’s the kind of guy who talks a big game, but wouldn’t follow through in a one-on-one situation.

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      • fjrobinson44 says:

        Oops, I think I accidentally thumbs downed when I meant to thumbs up. I completely agree with your assessment of carp.

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  7. Noel says:

    David Freese

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  8. Steve says:

    Adrian Beltre. Dude hits homers from his knees. He’s got a violent swing and he’ll kick the shit out of you if you try to rub his head.

    +7 Vote -1 Vote +1

  9. Dan Wade says:

    Kyle Farnsworth

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    • Kyle says:

      Seconded. And it’s not even close, boys.

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9mt0_0k40t4

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    • Robert J. Baumann says:

      Word up, here. I think being crazy like Nyjer Morgan or Adrian Beltre are crazy does not befit this nickname. To me, “I Am Not Afraid of You and I Will Beat Your Ass” suggests a sort of intentionality, a conscious projection of badassery and intimidation, whereas guys like Morgan and Beltre seem to be more solipsistic or neurotic (respectively). This nickname, while it might involve pathos, doesn’t scream neuroses to me.

      I vote Farnsworth.

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      • Steve says:

        Totally fair argument, but I don’t think Beltre falls under the “Crazy” category like Nyjer does. He’s more of a “barely controlled fury” type of player, which is what I think of when I hear this nickname. That, with the violence of his swing and how hard he plays leads me to him.

        Of course, Pujols could be the answer to this. The perfect robot swing who crushes souls like they are so many baseballs.

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        • David says:

          Another argument is the notion of why, exactly, such a statement of intimidation is being made in the first place. Pujols may crush souls like baseballs, but he is very secure in the knowledge of his strength. He doesn’t need to talk a bunch of sh*t about who he isn’t afraid of and what he will do to them.

          But Farnsworth is a failure as a starter and often a punch line as a reliever. If anyone needs to talk big to try to scare people (and assure himself), he is the one.

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      • Well-Beered Englishman says:

        I find this very hard to argue against. The nickname is definitely true of Beltre, Morgan, and Pujols, but in their cases it’s just because of, respectively, (a) temper, (b) insanity, and (c) ability to beat any ass presented to him.

        “I Am Not Afraid of You and I Will Beat Your Ass” does suggest a sort of calm, collected, rational look at the situation and a quick calculation that the player will, indeed, beat your ass.

        Okay, I think I talked myself into voting for Pujols.

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  10. Yirmiyahu says:

    nominees: Julian Tavarez, Nyjer Morgan, Adrian Beltre, Coco Crisp.

    caveats:
    – Tavarez is retired, unfortunately.
    – Nyjer Morgan already has a good nickname and seems a bit too fun-loving for this one.

    In the world of athletes, Coco Crisp is a pretty little dude, yet:
    http://cache.boston.com/resize/bonzai-fba/Globe_Photo/2008/06/05/1212708340_2535/499w.jpg
    http://www.thecitrusreport.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/04/Coco1.jpg

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  11. Big Baby Jesus says:

    Jeremy Affeldt. The guy went after Farnsworth in a fight.

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  12. Jennifer says:

    Henry Blanco. I would be very afraid to steal a base with Henry Blanco behind the plate. My roommate and I pretend he says “I’m going to cut a bitch” to would-be base stealers.

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    • Adam says:

      Second that! Anyone who can look so mean from under eyebrows so close together is obviously not afraid to beat your ass.

      I could totally see him sticking a knife between the ribs of a runner in a home plate collision.

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    • Stephanie says:

      Ha! Yes. Blanco looks super intimidating. Love him!

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  13. Scott says:

    I felt that Mike Gonzalez was going to stab the umpire everytime there was a called ball, regardless of how clearly outside the strike zone it was. At least ATL-era Gonzalez, haven’t really watched him since.

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  14. Bryz says:

    I don’t care if he’s retired, I’m going to nominate Nolan Ryan. Hitting Robin Ventura with a pitch and then putting Ventura into a headlock screams this nickname.

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  15. Darien says:

    Theodore Roosevelt Lilly. Not only does he have the ideal real name for a player with this nickname, he was so unafraid of his manager in 2006 (Jay Gibbons) that he actually DID beat his ass.

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  16. futurecfo says:

    David Ortiz, a la the fight he had with the Orioles pitcher back in the summer, general look of angry, etc.

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  17. therood says:

    While it will be difficult to vote against Kyle Farnsworth, I can think of only one player who’s had the cool demeanor of someone entirely unafraid of the rest of the league:

    Freddy Garcia.

    He’s always had the air of being on the cusp of beating the everloving crap out of opponents. Other teams are aware of this, and piss themselves in fear:

    http://baseball.dailyskew.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/04/freddy-garcia-yankees.jpg

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  18. ettin says:

    Jose Bautista pops into my mind…. Vladimir Guerrero was fearsome at the plate and could crush anything from his nose to his toes. Pujols too…..

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  19. Evan says:

    Dan Uggla.

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  20. The Rajah says:

    Robin Ventura votes for Nolan Ryan.

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    • kylemcg says:

      I actually would vote for Robin Ventura in this case. He was the young kid who was not afraid of Ryan and started the fight! The outcome doesn’t actually matter: it’s the declaration of fearlessness that earns the nickname.

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  21. camisadelgolf says:

    The stache says it all. (I might not have the right link.)
    http://sportsblogs.star-telegram.com/.a/6a00e54f7fc4c58833015436390b30970c-250wi

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  22. lollosaurus says:

    Can’t believe no one’s mentioned Carlos Zambrano. The guy picks fights WITH HIS OWN TEAMMATES.

    No youtube link; guess its been removed.

    Jon Rauch is perhaps a close second. Definitely the scariest looking guy in MLB.

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  23. Eric says:

    Shouldn’t it be Tim Thomas?

    Wiki:

    ‘Sitting on the bench together during a game, Thomas was caught on tape by the MSG Network in a profane exchange with fellow Knick, point guard Stephon Marbury. Thomas yelled at Marbury, “Everyone in this organization is afraid of you, but I’m not, and I will beat your ass.”

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  24. SAmmy says:

    Brian Tallet. For no real reason whatsoever.

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  25. Brad Johnson says:

    Shane Victorino. If I may reach back to the 90’s, Pete Incaviglia.

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  26. MikeyMike says:

    It’s gotta be Ryan Roberts

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  27. Jon says:

    Yadier Molina.
    Neck tats.
    Brandon Phillips fight
    guns out base-stealers.

    as if neck tats weren’t enough.

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  28. Lauren says:

    In terms of utter fearlessness and intimidation of others, I don’t know how you can overlook Roy Halladay. He looks like he wants to murder everyone who gets in his way.

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  29. kylemcg says:

    Late to the party as usual: I think this would most aptly apply to someone who is not afraid of you, and believes they can beat your ass, however actually will probably fail in the task of beating anyones ass, let alone yours. It’s like a tiny dog in a fight that somehow intimidates larger dogs.

    (Anger + Confidence)/(Size + Ability)

    Some people are picking Farnsworth here, and I think that’s off the mark.

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  30. Jonathan says:

    I immediately thought nyjer morgan.

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