This guest-post is part of the 2016 Baseball Continuum Blogathon For Charity, benefiting the Roswell Park Alliance Foundation. The Roswell Park Alliance Foundation is the charitable arm of Roswell Park Cancer Institute and funds raised will be “put to immediate use to increase the pace from research trials into improved clinical care, to ensure state-of-the-art facilities, and to help improve the quality of life for patients and their families.” Please donate through the Blogathon’s GoFundMe page. Also, please note that the opinions and statements of the writer are not necessarily those of the Baseball Continuum or it’s webmaster.
Throughout the baseball community, St. Louis baseball fans have a bad reputation. The “Best-Fans-In-Baseball” moniker is frequently used to ridicule Cardinals fans for their own brand of self-righteous blind homer-ism (to be fair, this is a phenomenon every single fan base exhibits to some extent). We’re not here today to discuss whether or not St. Louis has the best fans in baseball, we’re here to show you that St. Louis has THE best fan in baseball. His name is Cornell Iral Haynes Jr. — but you probably know him as Nelly.
Nelly is easily St. Louis’ most well known and successful rapper. His songs ‘Ride Wit Me’, ‘Hot in Herre’, ‘Dilemma’, and ‘Shake Ya Tailfeather’ have been certified platinum. But Nelly’s most important song — and thus his most important music video — is ‘Batter Up’, which combines a hook based on the theme song from The Jeffersons with Nelly’s love for baseball to form an undisputed artistic masterpiece.
Released in 2001, the music video for Batter Up is 4 minutes and 41 seconds of pure baseball delight. It’s got barbecue, bunt home runs, scantily clad women, and George Jefferson himself. So sit back, relax, and let us take you on a journey through the brilliant baseball mind of Cornell Haynes Jr.
Right off the bat we meet our announcers, two old balding white guys in ugly suits that are quite obviously not being portrayed by old balding white guys. Not trying to start a controversy here, but the one on the right bears a suspicious resemblance to Nelly.
We are introduced to the scoreboard operator: a heavyset man in a white tank top that is absolutely doused in BBQ sauce. This gentleman seems to be using the ribs as a paintbrush in order to carry out changes to the scoreboard. Notice how not a single pitch has been thrown, yet there are already three balls.
“And now, please rise for the singing of our National Anthem!” Hemsley proclaims. Was this a legitimate attempt to get Batter Up to be our new National Anthem? Nelly knows no bounds.
So many questions about this hat/hair combination. Is the glove embedded into the woman’s hairdo? Is it simply one enormous hair piece? Does Lids have any available in a 7 3/8?
Here we see something unprecedented in the baseball world: an entire team pre-inning huddle on the mound. Did the outfielders come into the infield after the catcher threw down to second? It looks like the coach is in there too. Maybe they’re drawing up some type of trick play.
Let’s take a look at the scoreboard in centerfield. Under it we see our old friend, the heavy set barbecuin’ chef. And oh, the score is somehow 62-0 in the top of the 1st inning. 62-0! The first pitch of the game hasn’t even been thrown yet. Could it be that Nelly and his St. Lunatics were at such a disadvantage that the other, seemingly more put-together outfit, spotted them 62 runs? Just some food for thought. Perhaps more importantly, what is even the circumstance of this game? Is it just a men’s league? Independent ball? Are the St. Lunatics barnstorming around the country challenging any semi-pro team that thinks they can take down Nelly & Co.? It’s just a peculiar match-up by all accounts.
What kinda shift is this? There’s supposedly no one on base yet (as evidenced by the ridiculous team huddle) but the middle infielders are in double play depth. And even if there was a dude on first, this would be extreme.
The bizarro double play shift looks even more absurd because this game is clearly being played on a field with Little League/softball dimensions. Making grown men play on a Little League size field has to be some sort of safety risk.
Yeah, that’s not a baseball field.
Posture – 40
Balance – 55
Torque – 30
Hat Content – 20
Early 2000’s Reebok Cleats – 80
Up first for the St. Lunatics is Ali. Let’s see what kind of swing he has… oh, that’s a pitbull.
If this game is being played in a baseball universe that permits batters to bring pitbulls up to the plate with them, the pitbulls should at the very least have to be in the batter’s box.
Despite the potential advantage intimidation-wise — is the pitcher even going to throw the ball if the catcher is too afraid to crouch? — you’d have to think that having a pitbull with you in the batter’s box would probably have a negative effect on offensive production. Not only does it force you to swing with only one hand, but you become significantly more susceptible pitches low in the zone.
Maybe because both the umpire and the opposing team are so intimidated by the presence of his pitbull, Ali bypasses the traditional rules of baseball and is awarded a single run without having to even swing the bat.
All you, barbecue scoreboard guy.
YOU CAN PUT IT ON THE BOOOOOOOARD, YESSSS.
Kyjuan steps up to the plate with, as far as we know, no one one base. Looks like he’s gonna try and bunt for a hit. Odd strategy at this point in the game, and considering his stolen base totals in recent years, but he must know something we don’t.
WELL THEN. The pitcher thought he could go up and in but Kyjuan brings his hands in and launches the ball over the centerfield wall…while bunting. He saunters down to first with pride. It’s basically Super Bunt from MLB 2K6.
We’re usually all for unique uniforms, but this one just seems impractical. Can you imagine sliding headfirst on dirt in that thing? THE HIGH HEELS! Also, WHY ARE YOU CALLING A CURVEBALL! At least the pitcher is smart enough to shake him off.
And even after calling off the curveball, the pitcher manages to airmail it into the press box. The umpire rules that the runner go to first, which makes zero sense unless that was ball four. More confusing is the outrage expressed by the catcher, the opposing manager, as well as the announcers. Who are they mad at? The umpire for calling ball four? The pitcher for throwing ball four? The batter for not wearing any clothes? What we do know for sure is our scorekeeper is still very much enjoying his barbecue:
This is a confusing shot for a few reasons. While we acknowledged that this is clearly not a professional sized field, and the dugouts most likely aren’t very big, it’s still rather odd to see the entire team out of the dugout standing in a line, expressing their discontent simultaneously. Also…is the manager wearing a World Series ring? Is this team supposed to be good??!?!
Our clean-up hitter for today’s game is Murphy Lee, who struts up to the plate with what appears to be his cell phone in one hand and his bat in the other. Without taking his eyes off his game of Tetris, he squares the first pitch up and launches it to right-center.
Murphy Lee apparently hit a 358-run dinger and now the score is 420-0. Starting to wonder why they needed to be spotted 62 runs from the start.
At least this ball actually went over the fence. Looking at you, Nyjer Morgan.
Our final batter of the day is Nelly, who promptly calls his shot. And the pitch…
BOOM. Absolutely crushed. Time to trot…
Nelly is now going to drive his car around the bases.
Based on previous at-bats, it’d be safe to assume that this monstrous hit was indeed a home run, and thus, no defense was in need of being played. But apparently not! As Nelly Tokyo drifts around third, we see him heading towards the catcher who is prepared to field the ball.
And you thought Chase Utley was reckless.
The St. Lunatics. The Best Fans in Baseball.
Jake Mintz and Jordan Shusterman are the guys behind “Cespedes Family BBQ” and co-host the “Cespedes Family Barbecast“. They can be followed at @CespedesBBQ.
This guest-post has been part of the 2016 Baseball Continuum Blogathon For Charity, benefiting the Roswell Park Alliance Foundation. The Roswell Park Alliance Foundation is the charitable arm of Roswell Park Cancer Institute and funds raised will be “put to immediate use to increase the pace from research trials into improved clinical care, to ensure state-of-the-art facilities, and to help improve the quality of life for patients and their families.” Please donate through the Blogathon’s GoFundMe page. Also, please note that the opinions and statements of the writer are not necessarily those of the Baseball Continuum or it’s webmaster.