The fat is so prevalent, that I've decided to pay homage to the diamond's tubbiest, the most rotund found around the league this year. Not all of them are household names, but they're well-known at all-you-can-eat buffets across the country.
I went for an American League lineup, because let's face it: the majority of the lard eventually settles in the AL. There's DH spots, the occasional day or two of first-base duty, and plenty of opportunities to pinch-hit for glory. The bench is pretty limited, but there's lots of power to be found throughout.
Now bear in mind a lot of these guys probably don't qualify as fat by normal human standards, but hey, they're fat to us. After all, we have to continue this already-shaky premise through to its logical conclusion, right?
Some of them just act fat, in that they appear lazy, wanton, and generally unimpressed by the beautiful game they're playing. They lollygag and laze around the field, they slouch and slump at the plate, or they spend countless hours sweating and gasping for breath while on the mound.
It's a joy to behold.
They are players whose size is equal to their legend, and we enjoy watching them toil.
Toil is especially true of the bullpen. All of these lumpy souls seem so perplexed and exhausted on the rubber that you wonder how they could pitch for more than an inning every week. Then injuries and muscle pulls begin, they spend weeks eating ice cream on the DL, and we secretly long for their return and subsequent mediocrity.
So, to recap: almost all of them are physically fat. Most of them are also mentally fat. It is this tenuous definition of "fat" that helps me select this side. Grab seven hot dogs and a Diet Coke, and let's take a look, shall we?
[height in feet and inches/weight in pounds]
C: HUMBERTO QUINTERO, Houston Astros
Tubby, seldom-used, and devoid of power or batting average. A mystifying combination. Little-known Fact: His paychecks go directly to the Frito-Lay Corporation, and in return they ship him a swimming pool full of corn chips every week. He swims in it like Scrooge McDuck before devouring them all and washing the salty mess down with some ice-cold Mug.
1B: PRINCE FIELDER, Milwaukee Brewers
One of the heaviest on the team. His carnivorous ways carried him to 50 HRs last season, and since he renounced the animal flesh, he's yet to hit even one. The mind baffles, while any Brewers fans at PETA are forced to be happy with a pyrrhic victory.
2B: RONNIE BELLIARD, Washington Nationals
It blows my mind that someone with such obvious obesity can manage to play such a physically-demanding position. He's not a guy with much finesse, but he fields admirably. He also eats like a fucking champion.
SS: MATT TUIASOSOPO, Seattle Mariners [minors]
I don't know anything about him. Is he related to the Oakland Raiders QB? I don't even know. I just know that his face is disturbingly wide, and that 223 lbs is the heaviest SS on any roster that I could find.
3B: MIGUEL CABRERA, Detroit Tigers
So fat, but man alive, the boy can hit. He's young now, but once he turns 30, a DH position will be calling his name. And he'll have earned it too.
LF: MANNY RAMIREZ, Boston Red Sox
THE definition of a mentally-fat player. He doesn't weigh as much as I thought, but his "Manny being Manny" excuses for lackadaisical fielding and his inability to jog to first base make him a lazy player. The HRs assuage this nomenclature, but let's face it: if you shed 200 HRs from his career stats, you're looking at a giant waste of time.
CF: ANDRUW JONES, Los Angeles Dodgers
Mentally fat. Where did his power go? Where are his HRs? Where is the batting average? He atones with some sporadic heroism on defense, but for the most part, you wonder how hard he's working now that the massive free agent contract is locked in for years to come. [see: Adrian Beltre. So obvious.] He makes Juan Pierre look efficient.
RF: JACK CUST, Oakland Athletics
Prototypical fat man. He can hit 10 HRs in a week if he wants to, but he'll strike out 20 times as well. King of the all-or-nothing approach. Fat fucker to boot. Name is three letters away from being "custard". Fatty.
DH: DMITRI YOUNG, Washington Nationals
Huge. Jolly. Giant smile. Giant beard. Giant waistline. I kinda like the guy though... he brings a certain joy to the game that would be lost without him. Doesn't disguise entirely that he's a mediocre player.
BENCH: ADAM DUNN, Cincinnati Reds
Another big guy, but he spreads it around height-wise. Like Cust, he's made a career of hitting a HR or striking out. It's a razor's edge for a player to walk on, although a gent of Dunn's stature simply blunts the razor and ruins the cute visual image.
BENCH: CARLOS LEE, Houston Astros
Another lard-ass. Why does left field play host to so many of these fat fucks? Hits for power, and is helped greatly by the fact that the Astros simply have no left field real estate for him to cover. It's a nice, short porch, much like Fenway, that he can camp under and become entranced and intoxicated by the sweet smell of ballpark franks. It's all downhill from there.
BENCH: WILY MO PENA, Washington Nationals
Fatty. I never liked him because he could be a Cub killer whenever he wanted, the guy who'd turn a 2-run deficit into a 5-run deficit and effectively end the game. Tosser.
BENCH: TROY GLAUS, St. Louis Cardinals
Is kinda fat, plays fat, thinks fat. Lazy third baseman, and another all-or-nothing guy. Pitchers around the league chuckle at the giant strike zone they have to play with. Still, St. Louis was dumb enough to pay moolah for him. Their problem, our comedy.
SP: CC SABATHIA, Cleveland Indians
He's so big, and normally so in control of his pitches. It hasn't seemed that way so far this season, so one can only logically assume that gravity is catching up to his portly shape.
SP: LIVAN HERNANDEZ, Minnesota Twins
When I think fat, I think Livan. He can throw 130 pitches per game because his arm is made of solid fat, and there is no muscle to fatigue.
SP: JOE BLANTON, Oakland Athletics
Couldn't pick him out of a lineup, but the numbers don't lie! You fat bastard, you fat bastard. Plus your name sounds fat. Blanton.Blaaanton. Blaaaah-nton. A fat fucking name for a fat fucking guy.
SP: GLENDON RUSCH, San Diego Padres
Not too fat physically, but man oh man, he plays fat. Every inning is torturous, his pitch counts rise quicker than his cholesterol,and he causes heart palpitations for the home team. Really. He never makes the game look easy. Can't just throw a strike;it has to be a 3-1 count first. And he'll try and throw a slider for the strike. Eeesh, squeaky bum time when he's throwing.
RP: BOB WICKMAN, Free Agent
Absolutely mystifying. Pitching never looks easy when he's practicing it. He blows more saves than Jeff Garcia blows long snappers. No wonder he's languishing in free agent land, a place he'll remain until a team on the fringes flat-out panics on July 28 when their closer snaps an elbow ligament.
RP: JOE BOROWSKI, Cleveland Indians
Plays fat. He tries so fucking hard, but spends a lot of time hurt because his skeletal structure simply can't support his heft. Again, another guy who tires you out when you watch him pitch. Closing the door on batters is as tough for him as closing the door to his pantry.
RP: JASON ISRINGHAUSEN, St. Louis Cardinals
The ears take up much of this. Had electric stuff at one point, but now just seems kinda blobby out there. You wonder how much more pressure he or his belt can manage, and which one will snap first.
RP: JONATHAN BROXTON, Los Angeles Dodgers
Christ. Just a massive, massive man. He pitches like a giant though, so I'll save the fun-making for someone else.
RP: RAY KING, Washington Nationals
Like Ray King! This poor, poor guy. He's made so many efforts to cut his weight after several seasons of fat jokes and Burger King comments, and to his credit, he's done well. Still, he's fat. His face is the size of the Lincoln Memorial.
RP: BRIAN BRUNEY, New York Yankees
Fat. Plays for the Yankees. Ergo, fat douchebag.
Who am I missing? What about legendary all-star fatness through the ages? Could we cobble together a list of historical lard-arses? Help, please, in the comments.