Q & A with Jesse Goldberg-Strassler

Baseball-Thesaurus-2e-cover_v2-fIf you know me, you know a love words/phrases.  I love their spellings, their etymologies, their pronunciations.  Well baseball is certainly full of great terms and phrases.  If you are a fan of “The Dickson Baseball Dictionary,” then you should also have in your library a copy of “The Baseball Thesaurus” by Jesse Goldberg-Strassler.

You may know Goldberg-Strassler as the voice of the Lansing Lugnuts baseball team, but he’s also a lover of phrases, and the Thesaurus is now in its second edition. I spoke with him about the book, his influences growing up, and his love of baseball and words.

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The Complete List of “Spoonerized” MLB Names

Last month we introduced the concept of “spoonerized” names.  A “spoonerism” is an error in speech or deliberate play on words in which corresponding consonants, vowels, or morphemes are switched (see metathesis) between two words in a phrase.  Fans of the VORG apparently love them: Craig Goldstein @cdgoldstein Wandy Rolf Jesse Spector @jessespector @cdgoldstein Randy … Read moreThe Complete List of “Spoonerized” MLB Names

The VORG is Rooting for Dean Anna

In the days leading up to, and the weeks after the Robinson Cano deal with the Mariners, the Yankees have seemingly turned over every stone looking for a live body to man second base.  One small move, made primarily for infield depth, occurred in November, when they traded for minor leaguer Dean Anna. If Anna … Read moreThe VORG is Rooting for Dean Anna

Players with Alphagrammatic Names

An alphagram of a word (or of any group of letters) consists of the word’s letters arranged in alphabetical order. For example, the alphagram of marlins is ailmnrs (no, its not “LOSING” . . . quiet down in the peanut gallery back there!). Two words are anagrams of each other if and only if they … Read morePlayers with Alphagrammatic Names

They Are Who We Thought They Were (with a slightly different name)

Sometimes you’ll be having a conversation with friends about ballplayers, and you’ll mistakenly mention someone with a very similar name to the one you are actually describing. For example,  perhaps you meant to talk about the white, 46-year-old former reliever for the 1980s Orioles and a bunch of other teams, Gregg Olson.  But you instead … Read moreThey Are Who We Thought They Were (with a slightly different name)

Noun You Tell Me!

In the aftermath of the “Verb Players” post, reader Kurt Blumenau lamented to me: Shame Emil Verban and Joe Verbanic didn’t qualify. I then wondered if there were any players whose names were the same as the actual parts of speech.  Lo and behold, I came upon this fellow who played five years in the … Read moreNoun You Tell Me!

“Verb” Players

While doing some research for the recent PIPA/SOPA brouhaha (and wouldn’t “PIPA SOPA Brouhaha” be a great band name?), I came across this player.  After the 12-year-old in me got finished giggling, I wondered how many other players had verbs for last and first names. It turns out, based on a cross-reference of this verb … Read more“Verb” Players

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