Sean Manaea: Just like us.
The Athletics pitcher, flanked by cardboard cutouts, was in the stands taking in the A’s 11-1 drubbing of the Mariners on Monday night. With new protocols in place, all players not being used in the game must sit in the stands to keep social distancing — and that has caused typically supportive teammates to get creative.
Well, Manaea clearly thought ahead, breaking out the Crayola box of 64 crayons to put together some signs to offer support for his teammates.
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The signs are:
“CANHABAL” for Mark Canha, “CHI” for Chad Pinder and, hilariously, “MAN CHAP” for Matt Chapman. That was likely not by design.
There’s some question as to who “EL BURRO” is, though. Depending on the language, that’s either Italian for “butter” or Spanish for “donkey.”
Manaea is a fit with the typically raucous and unique A’s fans, who are obviously absent because of the coronavirus pandemic. Baseball fans noticed Manaea’s devotion to his teammates and weighed in.
Manaea is the best cheerleader
— Kimm (@_kimms_) August 4, 2020
Just give Sean Manaea the Cy Young now pic.twitter.com/FStxmPYxBR
— Ben Ross (@BenRossTweets) August 4, 2020
Sean Manaea holding up signs in the stands is freakin awesome.
— Cardboard Icons (@cardboardicons) August 4, 2020
Sean Manaea fan cam is what we needed tonight.
— Katie•BLM•Defund the Police (@EllisFan14) August 4, 2020
Sean Manaea is my spirit animal. https://t.co/eDXSS64Pcn
— tony (@TonyCaminada) August 4, 2020
who do you believe has the best personality in baseball and why is it sean manaea? https://t.co/VPVpC2tj5I
— Kyle Grozen (@kylegrozen) August 4, 2020
A’s erupt for 11 runs. Sean Manaea is thinking: “Great now I need to make signs for every game.” #RootedInOakland pic.twitter.com/aO8JykBrTS
— Casey Pratt (@CaseyPrattABC7) August 4, 2020
If baseball is going to continue to roll on this year, then this is the kind of stuff that’s going to keep fans invested. Seeing the personalities of the players without the luxury of fans is a cool little peek behind the baseball curtain — a refreshing change given that baseball is the most guarded sport of any in the U.S.
Maybe next time, Manaea will paint his stomach and wear a green afro. Then the evolution will be complete.