With the exception of soccer, no other professional sports league has sexier players than Major League Baseball. NFL players are largely obese, overmuscled and brain addled from concussions; NBA players are freakishly tall and look silly in their baggy shorts; and the NHL teams are full of players with missing teeth and "ice rage" issues.
Granted, there's not a whole lot of running, jumping, or tackling involved in baseball. Still, the players look great standing around posing in their snug stretch pants that hug their groin, thighs, biceps and calves. And while they stand at homeplate or out in the field waiting for next pitch it gives us fans time to ogle them as they play with their bat, adjust their cup, or stretch teasingly.
Out of the 750 or so players on active rosters of Major League Baseball's 30 teams, here, in no particular order, are sixteen of my favorite players (vital statistics as of March 2013):
Giancarlo Stanton/Miami Marlins (23 years old/6'5"/245 lbs). Not only is this strapping superstar the youngest of my choices, his sexiness quotient increased tenfold when, at the start of last season, he chose to be called by his given first name, Giancarlo (rather than his middle name Michael, which friends called him since he was a boy).
Joe Mauer/ Minnesota Twins (turns 30 in April/6'5"/230 lbs.). For me, Joe's All-American good looks bring to mind the character Joe Boyd, the ball player in the movie, and Broadway musical, Damn Yankees. In addition to playing baseball Mauer is also a TV spokesperson for Head and Shoulders shampoo.
Albert Pujols/LA Angels (33 years old/6'3"/230 lbs.) - A slab of 100% pure Dominican beef with a mighty bat. Three MVP Awards and two World Series rings got him a 10-year, $254 million contract from his new team, the Angels. Ay papi indeed!
Ichiro Suzuki/NY Yankees (39 years old/5'11"/170 lbs.) - Somewhat like Toyota, Ichiro is the Japanese import who has had the greatest success in the U.S., becoming one of the greatest hitters of all time.
Carlos Beltran/St. Louis Cardinals (turns 36 in April /6'1"/215 lbs.) - First, I've always had a weakness for the name Carlos. Second, I think he may have has the most beautiful lips of any ballplayer.
Carlos Pena (35/6'2"/225 lbs.) - I told you I like the name Carlos, didn't I? Like Albert Pujols, Pena is big-batted Dominican known for hitting home runs. However, as his career winds down, Pena's strikeouts have become his defining feature. But he'd never have any trouble getting to first base with me.
Nick Markakis/Baltimore Orioles (29 years old/6'1"/190 lbs). One of the few players of Greek heritage, I'd love to see him in a toga debating with Socrates at the Acropolis as much as kneeling in the on-deck circle at Camden Yards.
Angel Pagan/SF Giants (31 years old, 6'2", 205 lbs). Pagan is the only member of the World Champion Giants chosen for this list. Although he may not be considered a superstar in terms of his baseball skills (but he's still an excellent player), he's in the elite class of sexy players. And Angel is a perfect name.
Andy Pettitte/NY Yankees (40 years old/6'5"/225 lbs) - Although he turns 41 in June and is a towering 6'5", he still has the qualities of a little boy (albeit with a pronounced five o'clock shadow). And his touch of a drawl from the Louisiana bayou makes him even more endearing.
Johnny Damon/ On verge of retiring (39 years old/6'2"/205 lbs.) - Whether sporting the shaggy mane he had in his days with the Red Sox or shortly cropped hair afterward, Johnny is adorable. Like David Wright, a very rambunctious puppy.
Jose Bautista/Toronto Blue Jays (32 years old/6'/190 lbs.) - If you didn't know his name you might think Bautista is of Israeli heritage, but like Albert Pujols he's from the Dominican Republic. Over the past few years he's become quite a home run hitter.
And a shout-out to retired studs such as Javy Lopez (near right), Carlos Delgado (far right) and Brady Anderson (center). Speaking of Anderson, for a number years at my summer share in Fire Island we had somewhat of a shrine to him, i.e. the poster to the right hanging in the living room above the fireplace.
And although the following five players didn't make the cut for the above list, they deserve mention because of their great names: Xavier Nady; Hunter Pence; Ian Kinsler; Ian Desmond; Denard Span and Chase Utley.