If you played any sport ever in your life, some principles of discipline and routine were instilled in you. In learning discipline and routine, there is a layer behind it that occupies an athlete: superstition. It could be as simple as a game day playlist, a certain meal, or a piece of uniform you wear, or you could be a baseball player and be a psychopath and take it to the furthest depths imaginable. Trust me, I lived it, saw it, and participated until college baseball ended, and there was no professional phone call. [Still not retired]
In high school, we had a teammate who rearranged his bats and placed it in a certain place in the dugout and if anyone touch said bat, he would not use it. Psychopath? Maybe. Was he right? Absolutely. He hit 26 home runs and got a full ride to Oklahoma State. We went on a 20 game win streak and lost a game before the state championship. During that run I did not wash my baseball pants, I also was the starting catcher playing baseball in late May/June in Houston. Psychopath? Possibly. Smelly? Absolutely. Did it work? I can still share battle stories at the bar 15 years later, so who’s the real winner here? College same story. We had a closer shotgun a Red Bull, smash gummy worms and chase it with a fat tobacco dip. Psychopath? Yup. Did it work? Led the conference in saves and throwing up in the dugout. Another one was our Ace wanting our throwback cloth jerseys that weighed 50 lbs in sweat in all his games. Psycho? Yes. Did it work? NAIA Legend, so you tell me. For me, it was always pants up unless we were 0fer and changed to pants down mid game which included a wardrobe change. Psycho? Maybe. A bit dramatic? Maybe. It’s only weird if it doesn’t work.
What I am getting at here is that baseball players are a different breed when it comes to superstition and it’s a slippery slope from a certain playlist on game days to creating a shrine to Jobu in your locker room.
Let’s check in on a few Astros superstitious decisions we’ve been able to see from a 30,000 foot view as fans.
Clean Shaven Kendall Graveman
The Astros re-acquired Mr. Graveman at the trade deadline after a 2021 playoff run with the Astros. Kendall and his outdoorsman beard were back! Until a few runs vs. the Yankees in back to back appearances then BOOM. Clean shaven baby face Graveman. Sometimes all you need is a good reset. (Extremely jealous of the beard game)
King Tuck and Batting Gloves
Chandler Rome, had a great piece today in The Athletic about the run MVP contender and friend of the program, Kyle Tucker, is on. The batting gloves have been a hot topic of discussion this year, as Kyle Tucker is becoming a very rich man in front of our eyes. The batting gloves in the past have been used in cold weather games or when a slide at the plate was going on, but this season the batting gloves have been an anchor with the new pitching clock. I am going to classify it under the superstitious column.
Alex Bregman Facial Hair
Friend of the program, literally shaved his mustache mid game in 2018.
Framber Valdez Navy’s and Glove Changes
The Framchise chooses what he wants to wear and that’s what Ace’s do. Framber Blues Baby!! Also changing his glove like 10 times in the World Series literally melted the Phillies fan base brains in real time.
Hey Siri, Play that song !