Welcome to The Rotation! This is a weekly column, written by yours truly, that talks about the wonderful blended worlds of baseball and music. These two have been staples of Americana for centuries and are as big a part of our culture as apple pie and Chevrolet. My goal is to pick a different topic between the beautiful, unified world of baseball and music and write about it each week.
Additionally, each week will also feature a segment detailing a personal favorite walk-up song—either historical or current. I’ll try to do one hitter and one pitcher walk-up each week. Nothing is more fun than a player with a unique, punny, or just outright rocking walk-up tune.
If you haven’t seen it yet, Andy Samberg’s comedy troupe, The Lonely Island, released a 30-minute collection of music videos on Netflix called The Unauthorized Bash Brothers Experience. The videos feature Samberg playing Jose Canseco and Akiva Schaffer playing Mark McGwire as they rap about their lives as the Oakland A’s famous home run-hitting duo. The songs are extremely raunchy, so many of the best lyrics were left off of this column for that reason.
If you want to hear more jokes about what steroids do to your body in graphic detail, check out the rest of the special on Netflix. It’s worth it.
The Unauthorized Bash Brothers Experience
Song: Uniform On
Lyric: We are the perfect pair to start a new society, filled with home run-hitting Gold Glove goliathees.
This lyric is better heard than read, as they attempt to rhyme society with a made up word, goliathees. Regardless, I think it’s particularly funny to call either McGwire or Canseco gold glovers in any capacity—although somewhat remarkably McGwire did win a Gold Glove in 1990.
Song: Uniform On
Lyric: Kirk Gibson‘s a pariah, baby boy
Gibson famously hit a limping, pinch-hit walk-off home run off Dennis Eckersley and the A’s in the 1988 World Series. This throwaway line is an ode to that event, one of a surprising few references in music to one of the most memorable events in baseball history.
Lyric: Buy all my steroids in bulk (Costco)
Wanna get as big as The Hulk (Hogan)
Stronger than Wolverine Teeth (Logan)
Answer to “Where’s the beef?” (Slogan)
This one doesn’t have that much to do with baseball, but man—that’s some hilarious rhyming that Samberg pulled off. And anything with a “where’s the beef?” reference gets a gold star from me, especially when they are going for an ’80s theme.
Song: Jose and Mark
Lyric: Go Jose Go, oiled up like Rambo/Take the needle out my butt and hop in the lambo
Probably the tamest line about steroids in any of the songs, this is one of the first lyrics from the movie and sets the tone for their ridiculous antics throughout.
Song: Let’s Bash
Lyric: Exposed to the oil that a pirate or a mariner
Spilled out his tanker.
That’s a cardinal sin, padre.
Yeah? Tell it to a Ranger
Samberg manages to knock out 25 different baseball team names in just the third verse of the song Let’s Bash, which ends with the line “If you didn’t know by now, I’m naming baseball teams.” I’d put the entire verse, but let’s just say some of the references are not family-friendly.
Walk-Up Songs of the Week
Hitter: Chase d’Arnaud – Pony (Ginuwine)
Mid-’90s R&B has been a popular theme in my walk-up songs of the week, and I couldn’t resist including perhaps the most popular, uh, Gentlemen’s Club song in recent years, short of using Pour Some Sugar on Me by Def Leppard.
D’Arnaud really tries to get the crowd in the mood with this jam—perhaps trying to make the fans forget that he’s a career .222 hitter with a 61 OPS+.
Pitcher: Scott Oberg – Kashmir (Led Zeppelin)
When I was growing up, I always imagined coming out of the bullpen to Led Zeppelin’s epic bass line in Kashmir. Left-hander Scott Oberg made my dream a reality, and is parlaying some of that Led Zeppelin voodoo magic into a 1.71 ERA and a shot at Colorado’s closing gig‚—despite a 4.4 BB/9 and a 3.96 FIP. Better hope that you aren’t an Oberg owner When the Levee Breaks.
Featured Image by Justin Paradis (@freshmeatcomm on Twitter)