Blue Jays: What should Vladimir Guerrero Jr’s nickname be?
Before becoming a big league regular someday, I’d love to see Blue Jays’ fans or his teammates come up with a great nickname for Vladimir Guerrero Jr.
His father was called, “The Impaler”, which was darn near as good as it gets when it comes to baseball nicknames. There have been plenty of great ones over the years, “The Iron Horse” for Lou Gehrig, the “Say Hey Kid” for Willie Mays“, or simply just “The Babe”.
The Blue Jays have had some great ones too like “Joltin’ Joe Carter“, “Joey Bats”, the “Bringer of Rain”, and of course “Doc”.
It’s a minor thing, and yet the truly great players in baseball and across sports generally end up with some sort of nickname. “Air Jordan” in basketball, “The Great One” in hockey.. you get the idea. And it got me thinking about the Blue Jays, and what they might be nicknaming some of their future stars, and mostly what they might be calling Vladimir Guerrero Jr.
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Nicknames usually happen pretty organically, but there’s also a decent chance that something that someone like Buck Martinez, Pat Tabler, or Dan Shulman might call him during a broadcast could stick. It’s more likely that the name will come from his teammates, but these days social media can have an influence on this goofy little topic as well.
When you look at the size of the young man, the first thought that comes into my head is “The Beast”. I mean that to be entirely as a compliment, as it’s a reflection of both his performance on the diamond, and also his sheer size.
The kid is just 19 years old, and when he visited the Blue Jays on Monday night at Tropicana Field, he made some of the big leaguers look pretty tiny by comparison. Just imagine when he’s a full grown man (as if he isn’t already). He’s currently listed as 6’1 and 200 lbs by www.milb.com, but I would venture to guess that could use some updating.
I also grew up with a guy who liked to be called “Then-Some”, in reference to his older brother. He had to live up to the performance his brother had displayed both on the mound and in the batter’s box, and because he was just two years younger everyone always remembered his star brother. However, he took pride when people said things like “you’re just as good as your brother, and then some”. Goofy name, but in the best case scenario Vlad Jr. ends up being just as good or even better than his Hall of Fame father. Maybe that name puts a little too much pressure on him, though.
I’ve often referred to Vlad Jr. as “The Kid” when I’ve written about him, but I’m not sure that one works, especially for Canadian baseball fans who fondly remember Gary Carter. Robin Yount was also called by that nickname, and he’s a Hall of Famer who played many big games against the Blue Jays during their glory days of the late 80’s and early 90’s. Ken Griffey Jr was also called by that name as well, while also being called “Junior”.
None of this ultimately matters, but it’s a fun topic to think about, especially as we wait for the young phenom to get healthy and get back to making headlines again. If you were given the job of giving him a nickname, what would you go with? Feel free to leave your thoughts in the comments below, I’m sure there should be some great ones floating around out there. Gotta be better than “then-some” anyway.