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MLB 2012: 10 Most Ridiculous Bobblehead Giveaways

Geoff EstesCorrespondent IMarch 30, 2012

MLB 2012: 10 Most Ridiculous Bobblehead Giveaways

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    The Major League Baseball season is (kind of) underway. 

    This can only mean one thing: promotional schedules!

    Of course, with the exception of pre/post game concerts with some of music's hottest stars (Whats up, M.C. Hammer and Boyz II Men?), bobbleheads are the hottest item.

    This season's promotional schedules offer a ton of bobblehead giveaways.

    Some teams have decided to honor some legends of the franchise (Dodgers, Indians, Mets) while others are commemorating classic moments (Rangers, A's).

    some of these bobbleheads are well deserved and will be great collectors items. Others? Not so much. 

    I am here to rank the "others."

    So fire up Ebay, or get in line early at the ballpark to get these soon-to-be heirlooms.

10. Sid Bream Slide: Atlanta Braves (June 9)

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    Sid Bream's slide that scored the winning run of the 1992 NLCS is one of the biggest moments in Atlanta Braves history.

    The CBS announcer, Sean McDonough, and the Braves announcer, Skip Caray both made calls that echo though time and will always be remembered by Braves fans.

    Even though it is a iconic moment, I think the credit is going to the wrong guy. Just because the famous run was scored by Bream, why does he get all the credit?

    Terry Pendleton doubled to lead off the inning. David Justice then reached, and Bream was merely walked. After Ron Gant got a ball in the air to score Pendelton on a sac fly, the Braves trailed by one.

    Francisco Cabrera came up with two on, and singled to left to score Justice and Bream on the famous slide. Why isn't the bobblehead of Francisco Cabrera?

    Sid Bream is a career .264 hitter and is notoriously slow. A bobblehead of him sliding into home is kind of ironic, since a) he didn't get the game-winning hit, and b) he was real slow.

    Bream did his job on the bases, but Francisco Cabrera and Terry Pendleton deserve even more credit.

    Maybe they will have Cabrera at the stadium to hand-deliver the bobbleheads to the fans.

9. Ron Washington: Texas Rangers (August 25)

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    I mean this with all due respect, but everything about Ron Washington screams crazy 1970's manager.

    I don't know if it is the hair (see above), the awesome mustache, the incredibly excitable nature, or the cocaine to World Series story, but Washington is extremely lovable, in a goofy uncle or wacky Little League coach kind of way.

    He is obviously a very smart man, and an excellent manager, as evidenced by the back-to-back pennants, but Washington just seems like he is off his rocker.

    He reminds me a little bit of a goofier version of Danny Glover from Angels in the Outfield. Just smart enough to be a good baseball man, and just different enough to try crazy schemes to win.

    Ron Washington seems like the kind of manager I would want to play for, and seeing him in bobblehead form is going to be priceless for a number of funny reasons. I just hope the head doesn't bobble right off every time the Rangers have a runner rounding third.

8. Keith Hernandez: New York Mets (June 17)

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    There is nothing strange about the Mets having a bobblehead of Keith Hernandez. He is in the New York Mets Hall of Fame, and arguably should be in Cooperstown.

    Hernandez has a career .296 average, with 162 home runs and, most impressively, 11 consecutive Gold Gloves.

    The thing that makes this so funny is the guy in the above picture with Hernandez. 

    I scarcely remember Hernandez as a player, and I probably only do because his last season was with my favorite team, the Cleveland Indians. When I hear the name "Keith Hernandez," I first think baseball, and then immediately think Seinfeld.

    The classic episode "The Boyfriend" featuring Hernandez as Elaine's boyfriend is one of my all-time favorites. Kramer and Newman, recounting the time Hernandez spit on them for saying "Nice game, pretty boy!" gets me every time.

    I am sure many Mets fans will cherish their Hernandez bobblehead, while many others will recant the "Magic Bullet Theory" portrayed by Kramer, Jerry and of course...Newman!

7. Scott Hatteberg 20 Game Win Streak: Oakland A's (August 18)

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    The Oakland A's are using Moneyball. 

    I don't mean the front office philosophy of valuing OBP and advanced statistics, I mean the movie. 

    The A's are riding the success of the Moneyball movie to a bobblehead night featuring Scott Hatteberg to commemorate the 20-game win streak in 2002.

    Yes, Hatteberg was integral to the success of the A's during that magical 2002 season, but in reality, he wasn't great. 

    Hatteberg is a career .273 hitter with 106 Home Runs.

    Hatteberg's long ball to win the 20th game in a row was unforgettable, especially now thanks to Brad Pitt and Chris Pratt, but bobblehead worthy? I don't know.

    If Oakland wanted to commemorate great moments in franchise history, how bout a Dave Stewart or Dave Parker World Series bobblehead?  Or how about a Jonah Hill Oscar nominee bobblehead?

6. Jeff Samardzija: Chicago Cubs (May 29)

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    Jeff Samardzija has been announced as the Cubs number three starter to begin the season. This bit of news was announced yesterday, but the Cubs announced this bobblehead weeks ago.

    So, in other words, had Samardzija not performed well this Spring, Randy Wells would have likely been starting on Jeff Samardzija bobblehead day.

    This is great for the former All-American receiver from Notre Dame, but probably not great for the Cubs.

    Samardzija had a great year last year as a reliever, throwing 88 innings out of the bullpen with a 2.97 ERA. Add those stats to his career stats, and these numbers emerge: 12-9, one save, 16 holds, 5 blown saves, 1.50 WHIP and a 4.40 ERA.

    Yikes.

    The Cubs better hope Samardzija performs like 2011, and not the previous three years, or this could be a somber bobblehead day.

    I suppose if all else fails, the Cubs could just add some curls to the bobblehead and call it Kenny Powers day.

5. Nyjer Morgan/T Plush: Milwaukee Brewers (June 10)

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    Last October's media "darling" Nyjer Morgan returns in bobblehead form this season.

    Morgan took center stage after the dramatic finish to game five of the NLDS between the Brewers and Diamondbacks. Morgan won the game with a single to score Carlos Gomez.

    Nyjer Morgan, or "T-Plush" as his alter ego is known, then proceeded to "beast out" and use profanity on national television, which was quite frankly, awesome, and right in line with his behavior all year.

    There are a lot worse things an athlete can do than use a bad word, so Morgan's slip-up is pretty minor in the grand scheme of things. What makes him so beloved in Milwaukee and disliked most other places is his erratic behavior.

    Morgan may be as big of a character as there is in Major League Baseball in 2012. He isn't an All-Star, and half the time last year, wasn't even a starter, but his outrageous personality is enough for the Brewers to give him a bobblehead.

    To make it even better, 5,000 special bobbleheads will be Morgan posing with his arms spelling out a "T" for T-Plush.

4. Chris Burke "18th Inning Walkoff": Houston Astros (July 28)

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    The Astros are celebrating great moments in franchise history this season, and Chris Burke's 18th inning walkoff home run in the 2005 NLDS is certainly one of them.

    It was a classic game and a monumental moment in Astros history.

    But still, Chris Burke?

    Burke is a career .239 hitter with 23 career home runs.  The guy is being immortalized in bobblehead form for hitting a home run, and he only has 23 career long balls. You know who else has exactly 23 career homers? Miami Marlins pitcher and resident madman, Carlos Zambrano.

    Burke played 2008 with the Arizona and 2009 with San Diego and is currently listed as a free agent. If he attends his own bobblehead night, it may be the only night this summer he spends in a Big League stadium.

    Perhaps the best thing about Chris Burke bobblehead night is that the Astros Chris Burke is not the best known "Chris Burke" in this country. That would probably be the guy who played Corky in the 80's show Life Goes On

    Yes, that Corky.

3. Klement's Italian Sausage: Milwaukee Brewers (July 1)

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    Ah, the famous Milwaukee Sausage Race.

    Thanks to Randall Simon and his dislike of sausages, the race has become famous and synonymous with Milwaukee.

    The Brewers have the Sausage Race, the Nationals have the President's Race and the fans love them. 

    The Brewers have capitalized on this in the past by selling Sausage Race T-shirts, Sausage stuffed animals and Sausage bobbleheads.

    This year, they are giving away the Italian Sausage in bobblehead form. This is the sausage wearing a chef's hat, for those wondering.

    It is a bit surprising, though, that after such a magical season last year in Milwaukee that they are using one of their six bobbleheads on a guy who hasn't played a game in a Brewers uniform (Aramis Ramirez) and another one on an Italian Sausage.

    Oh, one more thing: this is not the first time they have given away the Italian Sausage bobblehead. Guess it was a hit the first time.

2. Beer Vendor: Chicago White Sox (Aug. 4)

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    This wouldn't be as ridiculous, if the White Sox hadn't done the same thing last year.

    This looks like a desperation move by the Pale Hose. I think the Sox have some young players intriguing enough to use as a bobblehead. Alexei Ramirez, Chris Sale, John Danks, and Gordon Beckham all come to mind.

    Here is the drawback though: While admittedly applying to the Cubs more so than the White Sox, the book Scorecasting by Tobias J. Moskowitz and L. Jon Wertheim showed that ticket sales at Wrigley Field are correlated more with beer prices than winning percentage.

    Chicago may be a big city, but not big enough that the South Side doesn't cherish beer as much as the North Side.

    Beer Vendor at U.S. Cellular Field, we salute you. You keep the Sox fan happy and keep the South Side Police busy. 

    Apparently, the fans value your bobblehead more than the White Sox actual players, or the Sox wouldn't be doing this for the second year in a row.

1. DJ Kitty: Tampy Bay Rays (Aug. 5)

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    The Tampa Bay Rays are giving away a DJ Kitty bobblehead. Don't know who DJ Kitty is?  Check out the video.

    I'll wait.

    ...

    That is 1:25 of your life you are never getting back. The Rays are using this DJ Kitty thing, have designed a new mascot uniform that looks like DJ Kitty and are apparently embracing the character.

    I can't say I hate it. Who doesn't love animals acting like humans. Especially hilarious humans with gold chains.

    As ridiculous as this bobblehead is, I may find myself on eBay on the morning of August 6th, seeing how many are available.

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