The Brewers' creativity and individuality, from comical nicknames to meaningful tribute patches, is taking center stage during Players Weekend.The colorful jerseys and other accessories have come during an important series, too. The Crew opened a three-game set Friday against the Dodgers.From "El nino" to "Haderade," the Brewers' nicknames and patches
The Brewers' creativity and individuality, from comical nicknames to meaningful tribute patches, is taking center stage during Players Weekend.
The colorful jerseys and other accessories have come during an important series, too. The Crew opened a three-game set Friday against the Dodgers.
From "El nino" to "Haderade," the Brewers' nicknames and patches represent a diverse clubhouse. Each player selected a nickname to complement the non-traditional jerseys with alternate designs. Players also have uniquely colored and designed spikes, batting gloves, wristbands, compression sleeves, catchers' masks and bats.
And on the sleeve of each jersey, the Brewers have a patch that shows the progression of a child evolving into a Major Leaguer. In the white space under the logo, players will mark the name of those people who they are grateful to for helping them advance their careers.
Here's a rundown of all the monikers that can be seen through Sunday:
Jesus Aguilar: "DINO"
Aguilar says shortstop Orlando Arcia bestowed this nickname to him. It's pretty simple; Aguilar strikes an imposing figure. "Dino" just seemed appropriate, Arcia said.
Tribute patch: Dios y a Mi Familia Por siempre estar conmigo -- "Dino" says he's grateful to his family's unwavering support.
Chase Anderson: "TEXAS"
Anderson, known for always having a pair of cowboy boots within reach, is particularly proud of his home state, Texas, and hometown of Wichita Falls.
Tribute patch: God, family & coaches -- "It's a collective effort," Anderson says.
Orlando Arcia: "EL NIÑO"
"The Kid." Arcia had no idea this is the most famous nickname in Brewers history, since "The Kid" Robin Yount broke into the big leagues as an 18-year-old.
Tribute patch: Mi Familia y Dios -- Arcia's parents, Lilibeth and Oswaldo, introduced him to baseball.
Jacob Barnes: "CAVEMAN"
Barnes had originally settled on "Tarzan," but realized it was off limits as part of a film. He's not sure if "Caveman" will catch on, but it's a worthy alternative, he says.
Tribute patch: Barnes Family & friends -- Barnes couldn't have gotten to where he is today without the support from his family and friends.
Ryan Braun: "OCHO"
Fans of the film "Dodgeball" will recognize the reference to No. 8.
Tribute patch: Mom, Dad & Steve -- Steve, his younger brother, was an infielder in the Brewers' organization from 2008-10.
Keon Broxton: "FLA BOY"
The origin of Broxton's moniker dates back to his earliest days in travel ball on the baseball field. In Florida, no less.
Tribute patch: Evan Chambers -- Chambers is a former teammate of Broxton's who passed away. His home glove and everyday wristband both say "Chambers Heart" on them.
Craig Counsell: "THE CHICKEN"
A nod to "The Chicken Runs at Midnight," a tear-jerking story told by former Marlins (and Brewers) coach Rich Donnelly about his late daughter and Counsell's dash home with the winning run in Game 7 of the 1997 World Series. It is such a wonderful story that Counsell hopes to see it made into a movie.
Tribute patch: Mom & Dad -- Counsell's parents John and Jan, support his unending passion for baseball from an early age.
Zach Davies: "BAT BOY"
Davies said he considered "Counsell Jr.," which would have worked quite nicely for the baby-faced pitcher and his baby-faced manager. But he went with "bat boy," showing that "if you have a skill set and a passion, you can make it" to the Majors. Success isn't predicated on stature, he says.
Tribute patch: Davies Family & Holland Family -- Jeff Holland coached Davies at Mesquite High School (Gilbert, Ariz.) and helped him achieve his dream.
Oliver Drake: "BUCKO"
His dad called him his "Little Buckaroo" as a kid and it got shortened over years to "Buck" or "Bucko."
Tribute patch: Mom, Dad, and Elliott -- Drake is thankful for steady support from his family, including his older brother Elliott.
Matt Garza: "THE COUNT"
For many years, teammates called him "Duke Blue Devil." But Garza opted for "The Count," a nickname developed a few years back on T-shirts the Brewers used in the clubhouse.
Tribute patch: All my coaches for guidance, My Wife for being a pillar of strength/Mom kids for accepting the changes in our [lives] -- Garza is especially grateful for his wife, Serina. "Baseball life isn't always easy," he says.
Josh Hader: "HADERADE"
Hader's own Twitter bio refers to the reliever as "Josh Haderade," with a trademark notation for effect. He earned the nickname from a teammate his sophomore year of high school.
Tribute patch: Hader Family and Friends -- "Getting to the Majors isn't always an easy road," he says.
Jared Hughes: "BULL"
Hughes' college coach at Long Beach State, Tim McDonnell, gifted the nickname to Hughes for his strike-throwing, bulldog tendencies on the mound. It's also a nod to the 1980s sitcom "Night Court," which featured a bailiff with a passing resemblance to Hughes.
Tribute patch: San Marino Little League -- Coach Bob Drew and this Little League team gave him his start while teaching him the difference between lazy errors and effort errors -- a lesson he's taken to heart.
Jeremy Jeffress: "JAY-JAY"
Jeffress considered using just "J.J." but opted instead for "Jay-Jay" because it's more unique than just two letters. Like his teammates, he's using a long-standing nickname.
Tribute patch: Jeffress Family -- "I try to rep my family as best I can every day," he says.
Corey Knebel: "BIRD DOG"
Knebel says his college hitting coach, Tommy Harmon, gave him this moniker because "I did everything he asked of me with a smile on my face." The home brewer has also created a "Bird Dog" brew as well.
Tribute patch: Mother & Father -- Knebel is grateful for all the financial backing and road trips his family made to support his Major League dream.
Jimmy Nelson: "BIG SWEAT"
Nelson says former teammate, Will Smith, bestowed the name on him last year. He "earned it" because be often goes through five or six jerseys or undershirts each game, and had to order multiple specialty jerseys for this weekend. Teammates often joke he can sweat in a blizzard.
Tribute patch: To my wife, parents, brothers, coaches and all the fans -- It's a nod to all the people who have contributed to his success and are part of a "giant puzzle" of support.
Hernan Perez: "PAN BLANCO"
"White bread" in Spanish, a nickname lovingly bestowed by Garza.
Tribute patch: Gracias a mis padres, Mi Esposa, Abuelos y hermanos teammates -- "They support me every day. I'm so grateful," he said.
Manny Piña: "PINEAPPLE"
Sometimes, the simplest choice is the best one. Piña, of course, is Spanish for pineapple.
Tribute patch: Mama, Papa, Esposa -- Pina said he plays ever day for those who support him.
Domingo Santana: "SHOWMINGO"
Santana's nickname developed when he was traded to the Brewers from Houston in 2015. Braun called him "Showmingo" and it instantly stuck.
Tribute patch: Aida Santan, Domingo Santana, Manny Amador, Redbone, Darea, Rafael Polanco, Sam, Brock, Bute -- His father, also named Domingo, was a minor-league outfielder/pitcher in the Astros organization.
Travis Shaw: "TRAVIS MAYOR-DDC"
Shorthand for "The Mayor of Ding Dong City" -- a nickname bestowed by the website, Barstool Sports. The site's Red Sox writer, Jared Carrabis, had a friend who referred to homers as "ding dongs," and, when Shaw hit a bunch of them for Boston early in the 2016 season, it stuck. Shaw brought the moniker to Milwaukee, where he's racked up plenty of homers.
Tribute patch: Shaw Family & all my coaches -- "They're the reason why I'm where I am today," he says.
Eric Sogard: "NERD POWER"
Like Stephen Vogt, Sogard's nickname was bestowed by A's fans who made the bespectacled infielder a cult hero in Oakland. Sogard has noticed his nickname has followed him from team to team. He figures it'll follow him wherever he goes in life.
Tribute patch: Sogard Family -- Sogard and his wife, Kaycee, have one daughter, Saydee, and a son, Knix.
Anthony Swarzak: "SWARZY"
Like many of his teammates, Swarzak's is simple. "It's what I've been called on a baseball field my whole life."
Eric Thames: "SANG NAMJA"
Literally translated, "real man" or "manly" in Korean. According to Koran reporter Sung Min Kim, it more loosely translates to "bada--." His teammates in the Korea Baseball Organization coined the nickname when he often showed no pain on the occasional hit-by-pitch.
Tribute patch: Thames & Bettencourt Family and coaches -- Thames says Joey Bettencourt, a coach, mentor and friend, has helped him develop into a Major Leaguer.
Carlos Torres: "EL CARNICERO"
"The Butcher," in Spanish. This one is a mystery and might remain that way. Torres declined to dish on the genesis of his nickname: "I couldn't tell you even if I wanted to," he says.
Tribute patch: A.A. WT- you are my heart & I will love you 4ever -- His patch is dedicated to his daughter.
Jonathan Villar: "VILLI"
Villar isn't sure when or where he picked up the nickname, but it's a natural adoption of his last name.
Tribute patch: Dinora Mejia, Many Amador, Epedo Herrera y Family -- Epedo helped Villar develop his swing as a young ball player growing in the Dominican Republic.
Vogt: "I BELIEVE"
A's fans began chanting "I believe in Stephen Vogt" at Oakland Coliseum in 2014, when the everyman catcher was on the verge of an age-30 breakout the following season. Vogt selected "I believe" earlier this season when he was with Oakland as a way to honor the fans. He opted to keep it because he's heard the nickname catch on in Milwaukee.
Tribute patch: God First, Alyssa, My Family APU, All the people who have pushed me to be my best -- "Without family you can't do it," Vogt says.
Neil Walker: "WALKIE"
It's a nickname that evolved naturally and dates back to his T-ball days.
Tribute patch: Brad-mar-pine -- Walker's patch is a nod to his Little League time in Wexford, Pa., where he got his start in T-Ball and played until he was 12 years old in Pony League.
Jonathan Hawthorne is a reporter for MLB.com who covered the Brewers in San Francisco.
Caitlin Moyer, the Brewers' director of new media, contributed reporting on this story.