A Story And A Song – Angels In The Outfield

This time around, the song has almost nothing to do with the story. My reason for going with this song will be evident soon enough.

Our song today is Your Love, the big hit from The Outfield. It’s a very nice power pop offering that I’m sure most people have heard. It’s one of those ear candy songs that settles in and doesn’t go away, but I can live with having it stuck in my head for awhile.

And our story involves baseball. It does also involve music. This also isn’t so much a “story” as it is a news recap of stuff that happened last week.

Back last Wednesday on June 8th, the Los Angeles Angels found themselves mired in a 13-game losing streak. It was a franchise record for losing consecutive games. After a pretty hot start to the year, the Angels were getting beaten left and right. They fired their manager and were flailing for anything to reverse their fortunes and get back to winning.

In baseball it’s fairly common for players to have walk-up music play as they go to bat. It’s a bit like a pro wrestler’s entrance except not as dramatic. In fact, Charlie Blackmon of the Colorado Rockies uses Your Love as his walk-up song and the Rockies fans get pretty into it when he goes to the plate.

The Angels back over a week ago decided to change up their walk-up music while playing against the Boston Red Sox. Every single Angels player came out to a tune from the same band.

The band? Noted slump-breakers Nickelback.

Yes, every Angels player that night came to the plate to one of Nickelback’s many hits. The usual suspects were there – Someday, Rockstar, How You Remind Me and Animals were all accounted for. Other players used songs I honestly haven’t heard. And Shohei Ohtani, one of baseball’s best players and the face of the game, used Photograph. (not my favorite song).

The idea apparently came from someone on the team’s coaching staff. According to this NBC Sports article via Yahoo! News, Angels quality assurance manager Tim Buss is a huge Nickelback fan and offered up the idea to get something going.

So did the ploy work? No. The Angels lost the game 1-0. The team had no extra-base hits and it appears they never got a runner past second base. A lot of things could be blamed for the Angels’ woes – like the lack of roster depth beyond two of the best players in the game, one of whom was injured that night. But it’s far more fun to blame Nickelback.

Nickelback’s Twitter account got in on the action, tweeting an inspirational sports message to the Angels. Wrong sport, but hey, whatever works.

The Angels would end their suffering the next night – they beat Boston and ended their losing streak at 14 games. Since that time they’ve gone 2-4, not a great run but winning a few is better than not winning at all. The team doesn’t appear poised for a playoff run but could sneak in if they could generate a hot streak.

I’m not horribly invested in what the Angels do on the field, I’m a Cardinals fan. It is fun to watch Angels games on occasion to see what two of the game’s best players in Shohei Ohtani and Mike Trout get up to, but the team as a whole can’t seem to get the job done.

As for Nickelback? I mean, I do think the band takes far more shit than they really deserve. It doesn’t lead me to seek out their music, I have no real need to hear any of it again after being bombarded with it in the early 00’s when they were ever-present. And I do think Photograph is an pretty cringe song, that one always did rankle me.

But that’s all neither here nor there. I’ll keep jamming to The Outfield’s hit song. But it does appear that Nickelback doesn’t bring any good luck to the sports scene.

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