Friday, February 26, 2016

How Will John Sterling Call Home Runs for Starlin Castro and Aaron Hicks?

When Carson Cistulli of Fangraphs published the site's crowdsourced rankings of MLB's radio broadcast teams in 2012, the Yankees' duo of John Sterling and Suzyn Waldman came in dead last.

No skin off my back, though, because people seem to love reading about Sterling. Some of How Blank's most popular posts have been the ones detailing what Cistulli calls Sterling's "belabored trademark calls." Belabored or not, the thought of some new Sterling home run calls this season has me giddy.

The Yankees have added two new hitters who figure to play a lot and hit at least a few dingers. So I enlisted the help of our estranged blog-buddy Brian Kavanaugh to try to predict how Sterling will call home runs for new second baseman Starlin Castro and outfield import Aaron Hicks. Kavanaugh -- one of the punniest dudes I know -- didn't disappoint, sending a bunch of possibilities for each player. I've also included my prediction for each new guy.

Starlin Castro
  • "Shootin' Starlin!"
  • "Super Starlin!"
  • "You're a Star-lin, Castro!" (I'd say there's no way but I'm thinking of "You're on the mark, Teixeira!")
  • "A blast-ro from Castro!"
  • "A Cast blast!"
  • "Starlin is New York's new darlin'!"
As easy (and probable) as it would be for Sterling to use a pun on "Star" (e.g., "Castro's got star power!"), I think he'll go the rhyming route. Lotta potential here for something absurd, though.

Aaron Hicks
  • "The Hicks fix!!"
  • "Hicks marks the spot!"
  • "Aaron is tearin'!"
  • "This hicks is on fire!" (No way Sterling would, but I kinda like that.)
  • "A Hickster-upper!" (Or, "A Hickster-upper decker!")
  • "A Hicks-istential crisis!" (Again, no, but yes.)
  • "Hicks does the trick!"
  • "Home run for Hicks ... Aaron makes like Hank and hammers one!"

It's irritating that the Yankees have lots of veterans tied up to long-term contracts for so many reasons, and one of those is that it limits the team's roster turnover. If the Yanks had a recyclable roster like, say, the A's, we'd have dozens of players to imagine Sterling home run calls for. As it stands, though, Castro and Hicks are the only new position players who should garner significant playing time early in the season. If the Yankees acquire or call up anyone new, I'll try to stay a step ahead of "Jawn" and predict the newcomer's home run call.

In the next few weeks, I'll post a few more stories about actual baseball that you're all free to read. I won't be able to match last year's pace of a post per day, but I'll try to come up with some interesting stuff. I'm sure you'll be way more interested in keeping tabs on Sterling's home run calls, though, and I can't say that I really blame you.

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Follow Francis Tolan on Twitter @frantweet

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