It is a tradition as timeless as anything else that has happened twice prior: Our ranking of the most brilliant names out of all those who were selected during the recently completed MLB draft.
Yes, we have done the yeoman's work of vetting the entire database -- 40 rounds! 1,215 draftees! -- to determine the 25 most world-championship names of all, and what follows is our authoritative ordering of those names. We're also listing each young man's draft position, so that, if you wish, you may verify that, yes, someone actually is blessed with the given name in question. We have also taken the liberty of telling you what each evokes within the imagination -- i.e., what each name sounds like.
Let us begin ...
25. Max Pentecost, Blue Jays, no. 11
Sounds like: Evangelical comic book hero. He's perhaps a bit too prone to thundering condemnations of complete stangers, but there's no doubt the streets are safer for his efforts.
24. Keaton Steele, Twins, no. 230
Sounds like: Handsome cat burglar. He's fought his way out of some tough spots, made love out of others.
23. Doug Votoloto, Rangers, no. 276
Sounds like: Just a simple man who was born with a Compaq DeskPro 386 personal computer system as a head.
22. Blake Drake, Cardinals, no. 555
Sounds like: Most common fake ID name within Encinitas, California city proper. Averages 2.8 successful deployments before being seized by liquor store clerk.
21. Touki Toussaint, Diamondbacks, no. 16
Sounds like: Parisian street mime whose generosity of spirit compels him to speak, contrary to the traditions of his guild. When he does speak, he says very nice things.
20. Andrew Godbold, Dodgers, no. 699
Sounds like: Booming, furious pastor in a Nathaniel Hawthorne novel. His overgrown sense of righteousness suggests that a comeuppance shall be his fate. Occasionally helps out Max Pentecost in a pinch.
19. Onas Farfan, Twins, no. 620
Sounds like: “Game of Thrones” character. Will die by battle axe while having sex at a wedding.
18. Ronnie Muck, Angels, no. 899
Sounds like: Session bassist for Molly Hatchet from 1978-82.
17. Chase Mallard, Blue Jays, no. 414
Sounds like: Two-word interior monologue running on loop inside the head of any Labrador retriever appearing in any LL Bean catalogue.
16. Gavin LaValley, Reds, no. 125
Sounds like: Male lead character in 1998 mini-series broadcast on the WB. Role unwisely turned down by Jason Priestley.
15. Stone Garrett, Marlins, no. 227
Sounds like: Private investigator who made the mistake of getting too close this time and or “implement of capitulation” favored by Torquemada.
14. Cre Frinfrock, Brewers, no. 776
Sounds like: Someone who suffered the same fate as Onas Farfan, except that he's much shorter and will instead die when Orynn Veillon (Twins, no. 950) pushes an unmoored marble column on top of him … while he's having sex at a wedding.
13. Bo Way, Angels, no. 209
Sounds like: Thrice-elected sheriff of Calhoun County who has a certain Zen about him. Maintains high arrest rate despite having never brandished his service revolver. Doesn't mean he won't, though.
12. Brock Dykxhoorn, Astros, no. 166
Sounds like: Actually, it's “The Brock Dykxhoorn,” which is a popular mid-level pre-paid Viking funeral plan available at Costco.
11. Landon Lassiter, Rockies, no. 833
Sounds like: Well-dressed mortgage professional who typically hits his quarterly numbers and or a top-selling imperial stout in Wales.
10. Tristan Hildebrandt, Cardinals, no. 495
Sounds like: Mythological, Princeton-educated heir to old-line Eastern Seaboard mercantile fortune. If you are pure of heart and independently wealthy and listen closely, then sometimes late at night you can hear him wearing madris plaid and playing touch football on the lawn at Hyannis Port.
9. Hawtin Buchanan, Mariners, no. 591
Sounds like: Calhoun County's leading purveyor of illegal corn liquor. He and Sheriff Bo Way have a tenuous understanding.
8. Bryce Montes de Oca, White Sox, no. 408
Sounds like: Buccaneering swordsman who, although concealed in a black eyemask made from imported silks, is quite obviously prepossessing in appearance. He wears a scarlet belt sash, and his blade is as likely to sever a brassiere strap as it is to deliver a mortal wound to a member of the Royal Guard.
7. Zach Pop, Blue Jays, no. 684
Sounds like: Member of boy band/teen-idol ensemble “Up! Now!! Yes!!!” who drives the group's merch sales and recently broke up with Taylor Swift. Somehow wound up with a co-co-writing credit on the recently released chart-topper, “Best Prom Ever, Best Kiss Ever!”
Here's an a capella sampling from the group's recent in-studio appearance with Carson Daly:
6. Dex McCall, Astros, no. 916
Sounds like: Fellow who's presently putting together a crew to knock over the Lucky Europa Casino in Vegas. Just this one last job, he told Trixie, and he's out of the game for good. They'll come away with enough for that place in Turks and Caicos with the boat slip. He promised her.
5. Locke St. John, Tigers, no. 970
Sounds like: Eyepatch-wearing pleasure-seeker on “Days of Our Lives”. He's from old money but has a beard and a past.
4. Joey Pankake, Tigers, no. 220
Sounds like: “Independent contractor” who keeps an “office” near the wharf. Can get you a cheap Seiko or good rates on term life insurance.
3. Nigel Nootbaar, Orioles, no. 361
Sounds like: Accomplished and affable gentleman who, instead of internal organs, has within him a satisfying center of chocolate and caramel nougat.
2. Montana Durapau, Pirates, no. 971
Sounds like: According to the packaging, a men's fragrance you should try if you like the aroma and implications of Stetson, but would rather pay just $3.99 for 10 ounces of this, which can be found misplaced within a Walgreen's endcap display.
1. Bubba Blau, Brewers, no. 716
Sounds like: Onamonapia evocative of the explosion that ensued when Uncle Barney forgot to thaw out the turducken before dropping it in the deep fryer.
Before we depart, let us say that it is among our gravest regrets that Handsome Monica went undrafted this year. We expect that this oversight shall be addressed at a later date.