Baseball bans rookie hazing

Baseball is done with rookie hazing, the Associated Press reports today.

No more of this stuff.

Or this, all part of the rookie hazing “tradition” in which young players are required on a late-season road trip to travel while wearing outrageous costumes.

The Associated Press says the new collective bargaining agreement prohibits “requiring, coercing or encouraging” players from “dressing up as women or wearing costumes that may be offensive to individuals based on their race, sex, nationality, age, sexual orientation, gender identify or other characteristic.”

Some superhero costumes — Batman, Superman, or Nick Punto, for example — will still be allowed.

But this sort of thing? Out.


“Times have changed. There is certain conduct that we have to be conscious of,” union general counsel Dave Prouty said.

“The important thing for us was to recognize there was a policy but to preserve the players’ rights to challenge the level of discipline and the imposition of discipline,” he said.

Not all outfits are banned — superheroes such as Batman and Spider-Man are OK.

Other past costumes that would be allowed include San Francisco ace Madison Bumgarner as a giant ketchup bottle, Miami slugger Giancarlo Stanton on the U.S. Olympic men’s water polo team and Dodgers outfielder Yasiel Puig as Gumby.

The issue of locker room bullying erupted a few years ago when an NFL investigation found that Richie Incognito and two other Miami Dolphins engaged in persistent harassment toward teammate Jonathan Martin.

MLB looked at several college anti-hazing policies while developing these new rules.

The new baseball labor deal will be ratified today.

  • Rob

    Darn those politically correct leftist union leaders, taking all the fun out of behaving like thirteen-year-old boys…

    • Well, superhero costumes are still in, so there’s that…

      • Ben Chorn

        But what about Wonder Woman since, you know, it’s a woman?

        • I’m going to go with “that’s still fine due to the ‘superhero’ clause.'”

        • jon

          Only if it’s a non-offensive wonder woman…
          And given how offensive the original wonder woman was, and that she was the justice leagues secretary for years, I think she might be out…

        • Rob

          The UN finally came to its senses and is no longer advancing Wonder Woman as their preferred symbol of female empowerment. If the UN wants a more suitable imaginary character, I’m thinking Hermione Granger would be a good pick.

          • Jack Ungerleider

            Personally I think Emma Peel from the Avengers TV series is a better choice. (For those not old enough to remember, this is not the Marvel Avengers. Patrick McNee and Diana Rigg starred as secret agents John Steed and Emma Peel.)

          • Rob

            Nice choice! Man, did I have a crush on Ms. Peel – and on Stefanie Powers in her Girl from U.N.C.L.E role…

          • Jack Ungerleider

            To be precise it was Mrs. Peel. (There are references to Mr. Peel but I don’t think you ever see him.)

    • It wasn’t the union that proposed it.

      • Rob

        Then darn those politically correct leftist team owners!

        • jon

          I blame the Ricketts!

  • Mike Worcester

    Guess I’m just not a good dude as I’ve never understood how antics like this build team camaraderie or unity. The idea that “it’s always been this way” seems like a weak excuse. The thought that “it’s harmless so why worry about it” seems hardly well reasoned. The mentality that “it keeps the rookies in their place” seems borderline abusive.

    Guess I’ll just never get it….

    • Rob

      Yup. If it looks like hazing and acts like hazing, it’s hazing. Or, Sadism R Us.

  • Gary F

    The Twins had the rookie bullpen pitcher carry a Barbie backpack from the dugout to the bullpen. It was later switched to a sponge bob backpack.

    Will the SpongeBob backpack stay?

    • Rob

      What have you got against SpongeBob?

      • Gary F

        Besides fire underwater?

    • Mike Worcester

      My guess is yes. Though I’ve been spectacularly wrong before. Unless you sit close to where they walk (like at the Metrodome), you really did not notice it either.

  • Bob Sinclair

    // “…or Nick Punto”
    Hahaha – Good one Bob