A couple weeks ago, the Diamondbacks unveiled their official D-backs Luchador mascot, who will join their bobcat mascot and their three "Racing Legends" mascots as a third-tier mascot. Still not a mascot for the Arizona Diamondbacks? Any sort of reptile. Seems like kind of an oversight.
Naturally, we set about to determine which professional wrestlers, past or present, would be represented by the current incarnations of the Major League Baseball teams. We get paid for this!
If you missed the first part of this thought experiment (lol like "thinking" is involved), you can click here to see which wrestlers we envisioned as the embodiment of American League teams. Please keep in mind that these comparisons are based on the 2013 editions of each team.
The Atlanta Braves are Randy Orton
Remember when the Braves tanked and didn't make the playoffs? No, you don't remember that, because the Braves have only ever missed the playoffs like four times in your entire life. They're always in contention, whether or not you want them to be. They're always at the top of the heap, even when no one is demanding it or if their team is actually kinda lousy on paper. In fact, the only difference between the Braves and Randy Orton is that the players on the Braves own pants.
The Washington Nationals are Jeff Hardy
Everything was perfect. They had the most talented team in baseball and only got better. They didn't miss a beat. Dynamic, young, charismatic, unstoppable. Then all of a sudden their trailer exploded and they got arrested and they keep wanting to play you mp3s of their "band" but it just sounds like a dude who can't sing took a bunch of shrooms and hit the "DEMO" button on a Casio.
What was I talking about again?
The Philadelphia Phillies are the Honky Tonk Man
Remember how much the Phillies used to annoy you? Hoo boy, you HATED the Phillies! They were the worst! They had Shane Victorino and everything. Awful. And their fans! Woof. BUT have you thought about and/or REALLY hated the Phillies lately? No, of course not. Not worth hating any more. Not really worth getting worked up about much at all. In fact ... well heck, they're kind of endearing!
Which brings me to my point: the Honky Tonk Man was a joke for his entire career. A literal joke. He was HATED. Just absolutely DESPISED. He won his matches by cheating, or lost his matches by walking out. Finally, he was beaten by the Ultimate Warrior in 13 seconds to end the longest Intercontinental Championship reign in history. The real story of why he held the belt so long? He threatened Vince McMahon that he'd take the title to WCW if Vince made him lose it to Randy Savage. So he blackmailed his way into getting to remain a joke. Cut to 2013 and the WWE's official stance is that the Honky Tonk Man is the greatest Intercontinental Champion of all time. That is the company line. Fans love the Honky Tonk Man when he shows up because he's a "Legend."
I guess what I'm trying to say is that baseball is weird.
The New York Mets are Tommy Dreamer
Tommy Dreamer really tries as hard as he can. He really gives his heart and soul and blood and guts every single time he goes out there. That's why people love him. Because what you see is what you get. He's just a guy who loves the sport and leaves it all in the ring.
But in the end, he's just a fat guy wrestling in a T-shirt and has plastic pants with flames on the side.
The Miami Marlins are Samoa Joe
You may not know who Samoa Joe is, but for like five years he was tearing it up on the independent circuit, wrestling five-star matches against guys like CM Punk and Kenta Kobashi and completely defying what you think a fat guy is going to do in a wrestling ring. For years, the expectation of him getting a WWE deal was constant. The idea was that Samoa Joe was going to save a stagnant WWE singlehandedly.
Then he went to TNA.
He was successful in TNA for a while! He won the world title and everything! Then he quickly lost it. Shortly thereafter, he appeared to lose his passion for wrestling, started putting a tire skidmark on his face and entered into a feud with Scott Steiner that featured Samoa Joe wielding a machete and insinuating that he literally murdered Scott Steiner in a parking lot. He's just sort of been existing ever since. But hopes were so high. So high.
Actually, this is a much happier story than the Marlins deserve.
The Pittsburgh Pirates are Mark Henry
Mark Henry had never wrestled before, but when "the World's Strongest Man" came to the WWE in 1996, Vince McMahon loved "legitimate athletes" so much that he signed the former Olympian to a 10-year contract. A TEN-YEAR CONTRACT. Mark Henry could barely wrestle and had no personality, so he moved around as "best friend/hired muscle" for a while before his most memorable storyline to that point: a sex addict who got an old lady pregnant. It's ... it's for the best that you don't hear how that turned out.
Toward the end of that 10-year contract, Mark got just good enough to earn a new long-term deal. So his 10 years have turned into nearly 20 at this point. But just a couple of years ago, he turned a corner from "good enough" to "absolutely incredible oh my goodness where did this come from." Which is where we find our long-suffering Pirates now. We're all rooting for the Pirates and we're all rooting for Mark Henry. Maybe we always were.
The St. Louis Cardinals are Triple H
To anyone who doesn't have a vested interest, Triple H seems awesome! He always wins and everyone who is onscreen with him spends a lot of time talking about how great and successful and important he is. To anyone who is a Triple H fan, Triple H seems awesome! He always wins and talks about how good he is and then other people show up and AGREE about how good he is. To everyone else, Triple H is basically the worst thing ever. Sure, he's good. Sure, you've probably enjoyed lots of his matches and have thought he's cool at times (JUST ADMIT IT). But stop winning all the time; it's stupid. Everyone stop talking about how great he is. It's making us sick. Everyone shut up and stop it.
The Cincinnati Reds are Sting
Everyone loves Sting. Not the popular tantric bassist; rather the professional wrestler of the same name. "Oh, I love Sting!" you may be saying to yourself. Well, let me ask you something: are you aware that Sting has never stopped wrestling? In fact, he's in TNA right now! Go ahead; turn it on. We'll wait.
Oh, we're sorry we did that to you. No one should have to watch that. We're so sorry.
Anyway, as beloved and iconic as Sting is, there's a tier of people above him that he's never going to reach. Sting is never going to be Ric Flair. He's never going to be Hulk Hogan. He's never going to be Randy Savage. So while the 2013 Reds are great and have been for a long time, they seem mired in Sting country. Not a bad place to be, but man it looks like a lot of fun on that next level, doesn't it?
The Chicago Cubs are Ric Flair
All around the entire world, the Cubs are renowned. They're an icon. They're as much a symbol of baseball as Ric Flair is a symbol of professional wrestling. Here's the thing, though: it's not so great to be Ric Flair in 2013. He put up his world title belt as collateral for loans with like three different companies (just the one belt). He had a warrant issued for his arrest for failing to pay $32,000 in spousal support. That was literally TWO WEEKS AGO. He can't stop getting divorced and immediately married again. He's kind of a wreck, guys. Just like our beloved #Cubes.
The Milwaukee Brewers are Rey Mysterio
Boy, the Brewers really were something, once. They really set the world on fire. Now they're just fat, slow and keep getting busted for drugs. Ahem.
The Los Angeles Dodgers are Hulk Hogan
The Dodgers are one of the most recognizable icons in all of baseball and as time passes, they only get more powerful and unstoppable. By all rights both they and the Hulkster should be ruined by now, but you can't kill either one. Evil owner using team as slush fund? Savior falls to steroids scandal? $200 million trade doesn't pan out? PastaMania? It's fine. We've got this. In the World Series, look for the Dodgers to administer three swift punches and a big boot before dropping the leg for the win.
The Arizona Diamondbacks are the Ultimate Warrior
Always playing second fiddle to the Hulkster. Also, the most 1990s team of all time might as well be represented by the most 1990s wrestler of all time.
The Colorado Rockies are Batista
Both are artificially inflated (Rockies with their Coors Field-assisted home run numbers and Batistia in ... another way I ... can't think of right now). Both make poor aesthetic choices (Rockies with their black/purple/pinstripe/vest whatever they've got going on and Batista with his tribal sun bellybutton tattoo and weird chest/arm vein). But there's nothing necessarily WRONG with either of them. Way to be okay, Rockies and Batista!
The San Diego Padres are R-Truth
Because you've just been reminded that both the Padres and R-Truth exist. We're so sorry.
The San Francisco Giants are CM Punk
CM Punk, despite the fervent support of a rabid fan base, struggled for a very, very long time before almost accidentally setting the world on fire and enjoying a prolonged run of intense success. Now he's sort of slumming it. It's not a perfect comp for the 2013 Giants, but the only other option for their intense and prolonged pants-crapping this season is the time that Andre the Giant accidentally pooped on Bad News Brown during a match in Mexico. So if you like, pretend that this entry says "The San Francisco Giants are Andre the Giant pooping on Bad News Brown." There, see? Now everyone's happy. Except the Giants. And the late Bad News Brown.