You read the rumours, an “insider” or agent makes a comment, the media discusses what it might mean for your team’s fortunes, and then, finally, it happens: your team signs the new player! Woo and hoo.
As soon as possible, there’s a press conference. The chairman and manager/coach are delighted to have strengthened their squad with the signing of this player. The player is delighted to be playing for his new team and will be giving it 110%, and that he’s here to win trophies. Woo and hoo.
On the whole, these things are fairly run of the mill. It doesn’t really matter who the team is; it’s always the same deal.
Then come the photos. The traditional English football team photo is like this:
In an empty stadium we see the smiling manager holding one end of a scarf; the smiling player, wearing his new team’s shirt, holding the other end. Textbook tabloid fodder.
Since getting into baseball, though, I’ve noticed a totally different way of doing things. Look:
It’s quite stunningly silly: wearing the team shirt over the suit and tie the player is already wearing. Without fail, it looks stupid. Makes me chuckle every time I see it.
In an era where everything is so well organised to get the best possible media coverage, how did this become a standard way of announcing a new player? I get the idea of having the player there, and – rather like a reverse unveiling of a plaque – they want to give him his new uniform to put on in front of the cameras, but surely it’d make more sense for him to nip off the stage for 20 seconds and come back looking less of a dork.
Anyway, here’s Ohne Titel 13. No offence, Orioles fans (that’ll be just you then, Derick), I picked a team at random.