For the second consecutive year, Major Leaguers will put their personalities and passions on the field when Players' Weekend takes center stage during all games from Friday, Aug. 24, through Sunday, Aug. 26.Here are the nicknames the Red Sox will wear on their backs while sporting colorful, non-traditional uniforms featuring
For the second consecutive year, Major Leaguers will put their personalities and passions on the field when Players' Weekend takes center stage during all games from Friday, Aug. 24, through Sunday, Aug. 26.
Here are the nicknames the Red Sox will wear on their backs while sporting colorful, non-traditional uniforms featuring alternate designs inspired by youth-league uniforms:
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Matt Barnes: "BARNACLES"
Andrew Benintendi: "BENNY"
"Benny was something my dad's friends called him when he was younger," Benintendi said. "One of my dad's college teammates was my coach when I played as a kid, and he called me 'Benny,' and it just kind of went from there. My friends at Arkansas called me Benny, so I just kept it simple."
Mookie Betts: "MOOKIE"
Xander Bogaerts: "BOGIE"
Jackie Bradley Jr.: "JBJ"
Dan Butler: "BUTLER"
Rafael Devers: "CARITA"
"When we were younger and in the Dominican, we would always give each other nicknames and I was the kid who was always smiling and happy, so they said we would call this kid 'Carita,' which means baby face," Devers said.
Nathan Eovaldi: "EVO"
Richard Hembree: "HEATER HERE"
Marco Hernandez: "MARKITO"
Brock Holt: "BROCKSTAR"
"My first roommate in pro ball, Tony Sanchez, wanted me to get a Twitter handle, and I didn't really want one," Holt said. "He made my Twitter and made my handle @Brockstarforlyf, and that's where it started, and it just kind of stuck from there and people call me 'Brock Star.' And it kind of rolls off the tongue nice."
Christopher Johnson: "BJ"
Joe Kelly: "JIMMY B"
On a slow day in Spring Training, Kelly dressed up as a fictional TV reporter named Jim Buchanan, and it took on a life of its own. Hence, the nickname on the back of his Players' Weekend jersey.
Ian Kinsler: "BOOTSIE"
Craig Kimbrel: "DIRTY CRAIG"
The way the baseball explodes out of Kimbrel's right hand can look filthy, nasty or "dirty" to opposing hitters. The big, goopy glob on his hat from when he grabs the resin is also extremely dirty.
Sandy Leon: "NOAH"
Leon and his wife had their first child, a son named Noah, last November.
Austin Maddox: "MADD DAWG"
J.D. Martinez: "FLACO"
Mitch Moreland: "2 - BAGS"
When Moreland belted 11 doubles in his first 61 at-bats for the Red Sox last season, the nickname "Mitchie Two Bags" started showing up on social media. Moreland obviously saw those mentions, and he will go with 2-Bags for the second consecutive Players' Weekend.
Eduardo Nunez: "NUNIE"
Steve Pearce: "LATE LIGHTNING"
Dustin Pedroia: "PEDEY"
Thomas Pomeranz: "BIG SMOOTH"
"I can't remember if it was David Price or Rick Porcello or maybe a combination of both of the two, but when I got over here, they wanted to give me a nickname and they came up with this one, and it just kind of stuck," Pomeranz said. "Nobody really knew about it outside the team. Everyone knows about it now."
Rick Porcello: "VEINTIDÓS"
Porcello wears No. 22 for the Red Sox and the Spanish-speaking players have called him the Spanish translation of the number for quite some time.
David Price: "SLIM DUNKIN"
Eduardo Rodriguez: "EL GUALO"
Chris Sale: "THE CONDUCTOR"
It was pretty clear why the lanky Sale went with "Stickman" last year. But why "The Conductor" this year?
"Ask Pedey about that," Sale said.
Pedey, of course, is Red Sox second baseman Pedroia, who is away from the team rehabbing from his left knee injury in Arizona. MLB.com tracked down Pedroia for an explanation.
"You're a smart guy," Pedroia said via text. "What does a conductor do? They punch tickets."
And Sale punches out hitters as routinely. Consider the mystery solved.
Carson Smith: "SMITTY"
Blake Swihart: "SWI"
Tyler Thornburg: "THORN"
Christian Vazquez: "COLO"
"That's my Instagram nickname, too," Vazquez said. "They call me that in Puerto Rico in winter ball."
Hector Velazquez: "CABEZON"
The translation from Spanish to English is "big head." Enough said.
Brandon Workman: "WORK"
Steven Wright: "KNUCKSIE"
The best knuckleballer who ever lived was Phil Niekro, and his nickname during his Hall of Fame career was "Knucksie." This is Wright's way of paying tribute.
Ian Browne has covered the Red Sox for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter @IanMBrowne and Facebook.