Music and sports go hand in hand. Whether it’s tradition, like performing the national anthem prior to an event, the motivation found in listening to upbeat music before competing, mid-game chants by the crowds (we willll we willlll ROCK YOU!), or those NFL and NBA tv theme scores that are engraved into our psyche as sports fanatics, whenever there’s an athletic event going on you can bet your jock strap there’s a soundtrack to that event not far behind.
With Winter finally giving way to Spring and the baseball season now officially in full swing, we at Team JPL got to thinking about entrance music in baseball.
Versus other sports like hockey, basketball, and football where the team comes out together, a baseball entrance theme has the added element of it being unique to the individual player. Much like professional wrestling, in baseball the entrance music allows the player to send a message about who they are or how they compete, fire warning shots, etc… character development in a competitive showcase. It’s great.
True to his Hippie with an Attitude persona, if Prof played for the Red Sox he’d rotate between ‘Pac’s “Me Against The World”, Em’s “Til I Collapse,” and Jethro Tull’s “Locomotive Breath”. Scholar, on the other hand, would always come out to Nas & Puffy’s “Hate Me Now”, just to be a d*ck. Truth be told, Prof’s more of a football guy and Scholar would top out at Double-A equipment manager, but the point is that it’s fun to break down what some of these ballplayers are thinking when they choose their entrance music. As one takes a look at song choices around the league, Hip-Hop music is heavily featured with Drake’s “Started from the Bottom” being especially popular. Currently only “Radioactive” by Imagine Dragons is more widely used, chosen by 9 different players.
Our own Boston Red Sox have some interesting choices in their line-up. Grady Sizemore coming out to Lil’ Wayne’s “Rich as F*ck” (like Scholar choosing “Hate Me Now”) might be rooted in ‘jerk-dom’, but maybe he just likes the beat. David Ross gets heads bobbing with Busta Rhymes’ “Break Ya Neck”, while Jonny “the Beard” Gomes uses “The Boys are Back” from local sensation Dropkick Murphys. Scholar’s all-time favorite is Dustin Pedroia entering to Eazy-E’s “Real Muthaphukkin Gs”. Pedroia’s a west coast guy in his early 30s and he’s shown time and time again that he’s a scrappy competitor who’s not afraid to do the dirty work, so it’s not entirely shocking that he would be a fan of hardcore gangsta rap. But just hearing Eazy-E at Fenway gets a rise out of Scholar, and then to look up and see the smallest guy on the field walking up to the plate (remember, Eazy was roughly 5’5″ himself) just seems fittingly ironic.
Then there are some guys who choose their music specifically to buck the trend of fast, hard pump-up music. Gordon Beckham of the White Sox famously chose The Outfield’s “Your Love” beginning in 2010, not exactly a high-testosterone tune, but a move now replicated by a half dozen other players across the league. Similarly, the Sox’ “Flying Hawaiian”, Shane Victorino, comes out to the tune of Bob Marley’s “Three Little Birds”. What results is a stadium-wide sing-a-long of the Fenway Faithful as Shane makes his way to the plate, building to a boisterous “Every little thing’s gonna be alright!”
So whether guys are representing their home regions, sending a message, getting pumped for their at-bat, or unifying the crowd in a momentum-changing song and cheer, baseball entrance songs have become a quirky and enjoyable part of going to the park. With that in mind, we present to you the JP Lime Production’s Major League Baseball All Entrance Music Team (hereto referred to as JPLPMLBAEMT), position by position:
1B – Prince Fielder (TEX) – “Man of the Year” by Schoolboy Q
M-M-Man of the year, Man of the- there goes another home run
2B – Dustin Pedroia (BOS) – “Real Muthaphukkin’ Gs”, Eazy-E
Gangsta, just straight gangsta
SS – Jimmy Rollins (PHI) – “R.I.P”, Young Jeezy
Talk about picking an amped up banger that sends a direct message to the opponent about their impending doom. R.I.P I just killed the (ball)club!
3B – David Wright (NYM) – “(You’ve Got) The Right Stuff”, New Kids on the Block
Making a change from Luniz “I Got 5 on It” of past years, Wright keeps it old school… well, 90’s old school
DH – Adam Lind (TOR)– “If I Ruled the World”, Nas
Nas’ anthem certainly sets one up to swing for the fences
LF – Ryan Ludwick (CIN) – “Brass Monkey”, Beastie Boys
The boys from Brooklyn will gets any party going and that off-note horn hit at the beginning gets attention quick
Rf – Shane Victorino (BOS) – “Three Little Birds”, Bob Marley
As mentioned above, this (seemingly out of place) song choice has quickly become a fan favorite
Cf – Ben Revere (PHI) – “Feel Me Flow”, Naughty by Nature
In a similar vein, this hip-hop classic is more feel-good than hardcore but certainly a crowd pleaser
C- Josh Thole (TOR) – “Bugatti”, Ace Hood
Those trap drums would get anyone riled up before an at-bat – BANGER UP!
Pitchers (starting 5)-
Ricky Vaughn, (from the movie Major League) – “Wild Thing”, The Troggs
Matt Garza (MIL) – “Ambitionz as a Ridah”, Tupac
David Hernandez (ARZ) – “Gangsta’s Paradise”, Coolio
Justin Verlander (DET) – “Til I Collapse” Eminem
A.J. Burnett (PHI) – alternates between Marilyn Manson, ‘Beautiful People’, and the theme song to the ‘Walking Dead’
Closer – Mariano Rivera, formerly of New York Yankees – “Enter Sandman”, Metallica
We here at Team JPL may be Sox fans, but we’re not hating on Mariano or his longtime entrance music. On top of sending a clear message to the other team (it’s bedtime boys, Sandman’s ’bout to put you to sleep) the track itself kicks ass.
For more on all your favorite players’ entrance tracks, check out