Can You Guess Which MLB Draft Names We Made Up? An Important Quiz

Baseball is a game that abhors expression in every way. The one exception are the florid, goofy, aspirational names that players have. This quiz is about that.

May 25 2016, 2:05pm

Photo by David Banks-USA TODAY Sports

Baseball loves to talk about baseball: how it is dying, how boring it is, all the various things about it that are actually terrible and failing. Baseball is strange like that—there's something decadent and involuted about its chosen style of self-regard, a sort of doomy grandiosity that is more legitimately grandiose than legitimately doomy. Baseball takes itself seriously in a different way than, say, the National Football League does. Where the NFL considers itself to be, and behaves like, a swaggering authoritarian petro-state that shares a military and a flag with the United States, baseball's elite act as if baseball is the United States, and their discourse has the same sort of fussy, dour tone that the country's political discourse does. It's all a game, the baseball and the mock-serious conversations around it, but it's not much fun.

In a game that is mostly afraid to smile for fear of violating its own code, we're left to find the little individuated grace notes and broader expressiveness that make sports fun wherever we can. We see this in the quirks and individuations in how players approach this extremely difficult game. But also we see it in the weird names that baseball parents give their baseball-playing kids.

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Here we see the last, best place for an emotionally constipated culture to express itself. Where all American-born Major Leaguers were once named Greg, Tom, Ron, or Don, we now have a generation of rising players whose names are little free-jazz runs of aspirational nomenclature. The fact that most baseball players are from like six or seven towns in Texas, Georgia, Florida, or California kind of narrows the parameters a bit, but even within that space there is plenty of room for creativity. The fact that all of these people are not named Hunting Jones or Literally Handguns Green is itself a little miracle.

The world squeezes us. Norms constrain us; fear restrains us; things large and small, seen and unseen, obstruct us from being what we might be. But we can still give our kids weird musical baseball player names, and there is nothing that can stop us. And so, this: below are 22 names. Half of them are real, and half of them are made up. Your task: determine which ones are real and which ones are not. The quiz begins after this photo of Juan Uribe posing with several Minions.

Don't worry, we're almost there. Photo by Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

MLB Draft Names, Real or Nah?

1) Riefle Schrugg

2) Hever Bueno

3) Reagan Bazar

4) Tucker Ruggles

5) Riley Pint

6) Bermudo Thon

7) Cavan Biggio

8) Drake Fellows

9) Logan Shore

10) Brockley Beveridge

11) Braeden Ogle

12) Tritt Wheat

13) Brogan Hogan

14) Logan Ice

15) Blimpson Sopapillez

16) Jax Griffin

17) Griffin Jax

18) Destin Florida

19) Gavin Lux

20) Sandler Clamm

21) Hunter Bishop

22) Hunter Buttons

The answers are under this photo of Juan Uribe and Hyun-Jin Ryu.

A useful buffer. Photo by Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

Actual Players: 2, 3, 5, 7, 8, 9, 11, 14, 17, 19, 21

Probably Also Actual Players, But Since We Don't Know for Sure We Have to Say They're Made Up: 1, 4, 6, 10, 12, 13, 15, 16, 18, 20, 22