Actually, that’s the Dodgers’ bullpen gnome (there’s a dugout version as well; for details, go to this page and search on “gnome”), which the relievers apparently bring along with them from city to city. Maybe this is all common knowledge to many of you, but I was completely unaware of this phenomenon until Randy Williams sent me the bullpen pics yesterday. Pretty great ritual, although it seems like only a matter of time before Travelocity ruins the whole thing by becoming the team’s official gnome sponsor.
Uni Watch News Ticker: As far as I’m concerned, there was only one news story of import yesterday, and this was it. Additional info here and (self-servingly) here. … Great little video report here about a 115-year-old baseball board game discovered in a Missouri attic (with thanks to Chanan Liss). … Reprinted from yesterday’s comments: Pirates catcher Ronny Paulino has been wearing gray shinguards with yellow trim for road games. The gray plastic blends in with his gray road pants, so when he stands up it looks like he’s just wearing yellow knee pads. … Seattle’s new MLS team will be sponsored by Microsoft and Xbox. Real subtle jersey unveiling, too. … Not sure if we’ve covered this before, but the double-A Reading Phillies are wearing powder blue on the road these days. “The team’s official web site has it as an alternate,” says Kyle Creasy, “but my buddy who is the clubby in Erie says he thinks it’s an all-the-time thing.” … John Muir has scanned a bunch of great old photos from this book. Check out his gallery here. … My friend Josh Neufeld has been writing an ongoing comic about post-Katrina New Orleans. Yesterday he asked me if I could identify this jersey, because he wants to make sure he draws it accurately from various angles, but I’m not sure what team that is. If you know, please contact Josh. … The St. Paul Saints will be celebrating Prince’s 50th birthday on June 7th by wearing purple jerseys with symbols replacing uniform numbers. I’d love to attend, but
I’d rather slit my wrists I have other plans. … Lots of St. Louis Blues prototypes (some of which you’ve no doubt seen before, but probably not all of them) here, here, here, here, here, and, of course, here (courtesy of Karl Krekeler). … I’d forgotten that Duaner Sanchez, who wears goggles while pitching, goes goggles-free while batting. After pitching the top of the 11th last night, he got a rare plate appearance in the bottom of the 11th and removed the specs, then put them on again to pitch the top of the 12th. … Coupla interesting things about this photo of Omar Vizquel. First, when did he wear No. 42 with the Mariners? None of my uni-number reference sources list him as having worn this number (and no, that photo was not taken on April 15th of this year or last year). And second, note how his helmet underbrim appears to have been painted gray. I had heard of Jason Bay doing this (for less distraction, to be consistent with the old 5950s, etc.),” writes Mike Engle, “but I have never seen it before until now. How common was/is this modification?” Good question. I’d never even heard of it before now. Anyone..? … Bumper crop of panoramic team portraits and spectacular stadium shots in this thread (with thanks to Bob Andrews). … Nobody can accuse Doc Rivers of being too obsessed with picky details. … The Danbury Mad Hatters, who’ll join the EPHL this fall, have unveiled their uniforms — home, road, and alternate. It’s difficult to express how much I love that logo, but let’s just say I’m very anxiously awaiting the live mascot version (with thanks to Jeff Hoose).