The Definitive Ranking of All 30 PCL All-Stars’ Names
So the PCL followed the IL by announcing its All-Star roster today, and since we had so much fun ranking the IL All-Stars’ names, we figured we’d do it again with the PCL. Now before we dive into this, we’re just going to say that the PCL BROUGHT it in 2014, trumping the IL in the team category. We have no idea what will happen in two weeks time at the 2014 Cree Triple-A All-Star Game, but the battle of names has already been won. Advantage: PCL.
A review of the judging: Well, there’s not really a rubric. But we’ll be looking for some combination of fluidity (which ironically is not an easy word to say), originality and how pleasing it is to the ear.
30: Chris Taylor – Tacoma (.322-5-30): If Coach Taylor from Friday Night Lights (the show) had a son, he’d have probably named him Chris. Unfortunately, that gets you no points on this list.
29: Shane Peterson – Sacramento (.313-5-50): This name fits in well with ‘has-been golfer’ or ‘Little League World Series star’ categories. With the PCL competition though, it falls to 29 on our list.
28: Kyle Hendricks – Iowa (10-5, 3.58): A hard CK sound at the end of Hendricks does Kyle no favors. As evidenced in our IL list, that sound is a sure-fired way to find yourself near the bottom.
27: Nick Franklin – Tacoma (.302-9-37): Franklin’s a tough last name to have. There’s the sporting brand, the turtle; it’s hard to make Franklin your own. And with the first name Nick he’s put in a tough spot.
26: Mike Jacobs – Reno (.304-12-61): The CK to B transition can be difficult. Say it. MiKe JaCoBs. The poor O between the C and the B can get left out, and we’re all about inclusion of the vowels.
25: Ben Paulsen – Colorado Springs (.306-13-53): Paulsen is one of those names that’s not too common, but it’s also not UNcommon. The first name Ben also not very original. Solid name, but too tough of competition in the PCL.
24: Derek Eitel – Reno (5-1, 2.70): A nice short name, but Eitel can throw some people for a loop. On a quick glance it can also look like Eiffel, as in the Eiffel Tower. We’re sorry, but we thought this was ‘Merica.
23: Donovan Hand – Nashville (1-4, 5.40, 13 SV): Certainly a punny name (lend us a Hand). And not too many people go by the first name Donovan. The 23 slot just shows how strong a class the 2014 PCL All-Stars are.
22: Spencer Patton – Omaha (4-3, 4.54, 14 SV): General Patton. An American hero, so brownie points for that hook up. Spencer on the other hand is original, but the SP combination can be dangerous. SPit flying everywhere if you’re not careful.
21: Jonathan Galvez – El Paso (.298-6-24): This is a smooth name. Imagine you’re a broadcaster. “Jonathan Galvez fields and throws to first… in time.” It’s like the James Bond of broadcasting routine ground outs.
20: Brennan Boesch – Salt Lake (.335-12-46): The name Brennan. Are we talking about this Brennan or Step Brothers? Either way it’s awesome. But Boesch is a KILLER. Crazy vowel-to-consonant transition. Tough for those who don’t already know how it’s pronounced.
19: Jared Hoying – Round Rock (.260-15-48): It’s not an easy last name to say. However, it’s intriguing. We might take some flack for this being ranked above some others, but honestly, we’re over it.
18: Max Stassi – Oklahoma City (.237-6-32): An X in either your first or last name is very important. However, the X in Max can run into the S in Stassi, creating a “Maxstassi” effect unless you’re super careful about differentiating between the two.
17: Stephen Piscotty – Memphis (.306-5-45): A lot of characters, but a lot of fun. Piscotty is enjoyable to say, and the last four letters are the same as the last four letters of potty. And we’re not immature, you were thinking the same thing.
16: Heath Hembree – Fresno (1-2, 4.05, 15 SV): A good southern name, and no surprise since he’s from Spartanburg, S.C. This is the name of the guy who lives next door to you and always shows up when you’re grilling, even though he’s never invited.
15: Logan Kensing – Tacoma (2-0, 1.70, 2 SV): Similar to Liam Hendriks in the IL, no reason why Kensing comes in at 15. And that’s all we have to say about that.
14: Elih Villanueva – New Orleans (8-5, 3.13): A tricky first name, but Villanueva is a lot of fun to say. It just keeps going and going, like a Phish concert (or song, for that matter).
13: Jimmy Nelson – Nashville (10-2, 1.56): His last name is Nelson and he plays in Nashville. Is anybody else paging Willie?
12: Chaz Roe – New Orleans (3-3, 3.61, 9 SV): If Chaz Roe isn’t the name of someone who would be a member of the Cobra Kai then we don’t know who would be. Wax on…
11: Nick Tropeano – Oklahoma City (6-4, 2.38): We’re pretty sure Nick Tropeano was the name of a character in an episode of The Sopranos. An authentic Italian name, no?
10: Tsuyoshi Wada – Iowa (9-4, 2.55): The T is silent, so it’s pronounced sih-yo-SHEE. And if knowing that you disagree with his ranking on this list, then we (disrespectfully) disagree with you.
9: Joc Pederson – Albuquerque (.319-17-42): How many people do you know that are named Joc? Big originality points right there. Pederson does him no favors, but this is a baseball name if we ever heard one.
8: Gregorio Petit – Oklahoma City (.301-9-38): If your first name is Gregorio you are going to be a top-1o pick, no questions. Petit holds him back ever so slightly. It’s the small things that separate the good from the great.
7: Andrew Susac – Fresno (.261-7-25): Susac. Say it again. Susac. It’s a last name that goes well in a coffee house at a poetry reading. *Bongos* Now welcome, Andrew Susac *snaps fingers*.
6: Allan Dykstra – Las Vegas (.283-12-56): Not sure if we’ve heard of anybody named Allan since Boy Meets World went off the air. Score one for originality. Plus his last name is Dykstra. Consonants left and right but he makes it work.
5: Gabriel Noriega – Tacoma (.328-1-23): Paired with Noriega, it’s tough to find a bad first name. But pairing Noriega with Gabriel?! Baller combination. Drops mic.
3: Blake Parker – Iowa (0-0, 1.44, 18 SV): Some may not be happy with this ranking, but Blake Parker is a true baseball name. And that’s not negotiable.
2: Paulo Orlando – Omaha (.318-5-37): This is name is yoga for the ears. Truly serene, and once you’re done saying it you feel like a new person.
1: Arismendy Alcantara – Iowa (.310-10-40): In a strong field, there was never really any doubt who would take top billing. A nice balance of vowels and consonants, his name is like a poem comprised of flowers and puppies. Arismendy Alcantara, we salute you.