A 2012 Major League Baseball Preview Based Entirely On Team-Name Cuteness

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The 2012 Major League Baseball Season is officially upon us, and while I’d love to channel my enthusiasm into a big “MLB Season Preview” post, most of my past attempts to sneak pseudo-sportswriting onto BWE have been met with varying degrees of reader-apathy.

So, rather than completely give up, let’s meet somewhere in the middle with something everyone on Bestweekever DOES like: Random, adorable photos of things. Here’s a division-by-division breakdown of what to expect this Baseball Season based entirely on the cuteness of one photo representing each team nickname. LET THE ANALYSIS BEGIN:

American League East

1. Baltimore Orioles

2. Boston Red Sox


[Photo: Flickr]

3. New York Yankees


4. Toronto Blue Jays

5. Tampa Bay Rays

One of the league’s most notoriously difficult divisions goes four-deep on cute photos, with the dog wearing literal red socks juuust eking out the Yankee-kid and the Blue Jay, but ultimately losing out to the tiny Oriole standing on an orange. In all, it should be a tightly contested division at the top, with the gross-from-any-angle Rays finishing a distant fifth.

American League Central

1. Detroit Tigers

2. Kansas City Royals


[Photo: Flickr]

3. Minnesota Twins

4. Chicago White Sox


[Photo: Flickr]

5. Cleveland Indians


[Photo: Flickr]

Again, a very close, adorable race between the Tigers, Twins and Royals, which should largely come down to which animal can yawn the most humanlike down the stretch. The White Sox lag behind mostly because we just reused the same joke from the Red Sox pic, and that Indian dog does NOT look happy.

American League West

1. Los Angeles Angels


[Photo: Flickr]

2. Texas Rangers


[Photo: Flickr]

3. Seattle Mariners

4. Oakland Athletics


[Photo: Flickr]

Not the AL’s strongest division in terms of arbitrary nickname-related photo cuteness, but the Angels can hold their own, and I’m a big personal fan of that Ranger-Dog even if it seems a tad gruff. The Athletic-shoes dog brings up the rear, since he seems very unhappy about wearing athletic shoes.

National League East

1. Philadelphia Phillies

2. Washington Nationals

3. Atlanta Braves

4. New York Mets


[Photo: megaman.wikia.com]

5. Miami Marlins

One of baseball’s strongest ‘actual’ divisions is also one of its weakest in terms of cuteness, with even the Nationals eagle-hatchling failing to impress. The Mega-Man ‘Met’ was always pretty cool-looking but SUPER annoying in all the games, so we’re docking him down to 4th, just ahead of that godawful Marlin. Phillies win in a trot-away.

National League Central

1. Chicago Cubs

2. Milwaukee Brewers


[Photo: Flickr]

3. Cincinnati Reds


[Photo: ecsotumes.org]

4. Pittsburgh Pirates


[Photo: Flickr]

5. St. Louis Cardinals

6. Houston Astros


[Photo: womansday.com]

A deceptively deep division, but the Cubs are hands-down my early World-Series-Based-On-Cuteness pick to come out of the NL. I was gonna use a pic of a Sun Bear Cub, but figured that wasn’t technically the type of bear implied by that team’s name, but more so just because the list would’ve begun and ended there.

National League West

1. San Diego Padres


[Photo: thefw.com]

2. San Francisco Giants

3. Los Angeles Dodgers


[Photo: rainbeauseitz.com]

4. Colorado Rockies


[Photo: ecostumes.org]

5. Arizona Diamondbacks


[Photo: Flickr]

Kind of an odd division, mostly due to a glaring lack of team nicknames based on actual animals, but that Padres ‘Friar Baby’ looks poised for a breakout season and we don’t wanna be late to the bandwagon. The kids playing Dodgeball and the ‘Rocky’ costume kid are obviously stretches, but at least they’re not baby snakes; look for the Diamondbacks and Rays to race to the bottom for next year’s First Overall Cuteness Pick (Draft Picks are actually adult versions of the thing that then develop into cuter, baby version of that thing when they reach the majors. Does this make sense? Am I mixing metaphors now? No, because there was never a coherent metaphor in place at any point in this post to begin with.)

WORLD SERIES PREDICTION: Tigers over Cubs in 7. It’ll be so hotly contested, they’ll just curl up together for one big final adorable nap when it’s over.

(All pics via Getty Images unless otherwise labeled)