One of the very few things that kept me from becoming a professional ball player – aside from things such as lacking talent, or decent build, or motivation, and only scoring a 22 on my baseball IQ test – was my fragile ego. All rookies must go through a period of hazing and I wanted none of it.

But when it happens to others, it’s pretty funny.

Technically, Mets’ side-arming reliever Joe Smith is no rookie. But at the age of 24, he’s still the youngest member of the Mets bullpen, which apparently makes him fair game.

Last month, closer Billy Wagner presented Joe with a gift – his very own pink Hello Kitty backpack. And Joe was told to wear it every time he made the trip from the dugout to the bullpen (photo courtesy of Rants and Raves).

But that’s not all, folks. The bag also sits in the pen during the game and apparently actually has stuff inside.  Here, we have a picture of Tony Armas Jr. breaking many manly codes by reaching into a pink Hello Kitty backpack to fetch a bottle of lotion. In a Major League Bullpen (photo courtesy of

Yeah. I wouldn’t have lasted a week in a big league clubhouse.

22 Responses to “The Mets Bullpen Is Full Of Sensitive Gentlemen”

  1. Sarah Green says:

    Actually, the Red Sox do this too. I think it maybe one of those timeless hardball rituals whose origins are now lost in the hazy deeps of history.

  2. Matthew K says:

    The cubs do the same thing too – the backpack is usually full of sunflower seeds and gum.

    Looks like the Twins do it too – Pat Neshek auctioned off the old backpack on his blog (May 21st.)

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