Admit it, your first guess for a Jeter alias was Vincent Chase, not Johnny Drama.
If you want a sense of the zeal with which Yankees front-office employees were shoveling as many receipts at taxpayers as possible in 2005 (as reported in this week’s Voice), look no further than this: Accidentally included in a stack of paperwork from a road trip the Yanks took to Seattle the last week of August 2005 was a crib sheet explaining which player and coach names went with which hotel-room pseudonyms, presumably so that bookkeeping could know who was running up the room service bills.
For any Yankee fan, though, especially those who’ve ever been tempted to stalk their favorite pinstripers but couldn’t tell whose room was occupied by “Bruce Almighty” and whose by “Turd Ferguson,” it’s a tantalizing glimpse into the inner workings of the Yankee mind.
Among the more notable monikers:
Pseudonym: Simon Phoenix
Real name: Mike Mussina
Interpretation: Either the bookish hurler is a big Demolition Man fan, or he just identifies with characters who unexpectedly find themselves out of place in the 21st century. There is no truth to the rumor that when Wesley Snipes blew a line reading, he snorted, “Who are they going replace me with?”
Pseudonym: Bruce Almighty
Real name: Don Mattingly
Interpretation: As the Mets found out this year, it’s not that easy replacing Rick Down.
Pseudonym: Austin Powers
Real name: Ruben Sierra
Interpretation: It beats “Village Idiot.” Well, maybe.
Pseudonym: Richard Long
Real name: Bernie Williams
Interpretation: One hopes it’s either the actor, the sculptor, or the viscount— anything but the obvious junior-high-school gag. But has anyone ever truly understood what was going on in Bernie’s head?
Pseudonym: Johnny Drama
Real name: Derek Jeter
Interpretation: Desire to be the sidekick in somebody else’s entourage for a change, or resentment at being upstaged by your infield “brother” — you make the call.
Pseudonym: Turd Ferguson
Real name: Jaret Wright
Interpretation: SNL has been painful to watch most of the last decade, too.
Other names are more mundane or enigmatic: Ricky Ricardo (Jorge Posada), Joe Saturday (Hideki Matsui), Harry Pelotas (Luis Sojo), Sam Adams (Randy Johnson — now there’s a good fit for “Dick Long”), Eleven Fifty (Matt Lawton, who fittingly was forgotten by all involved about ten minutes later). A-Rod stayed at a different hotel — yes, with Cynthia — and so didn’t make the list.
And front-office advisor Reggie Jackson went by. . . Reggie Jackson. You expected something else from a guy who put his face on a candy bar?