Kiss the cheesy organ music goodbye. Nowadays relief pitchers take the mound like professional wrestlers, as their walk-up songs pump up the fans and build their brand identities. Check out some of the hottest hits of the past several years, along with the dudes who’ve employed them. Want to hear the songs? Listen to the (almost complete) walk-up song playlist on Made Man's Spotify:
“Wild Thing” by X, Mitch Williams The original is always the best. Charlie Sheen kicked off the walk-up craze with LA punk band X’s cover of The Wild Ones’ 1965 track in Major League. Williams followed in his footsteps by WINNING. What? We’re bringing it back.
“Jump Around” by House of Pain, Brian Wilson When he’s not hanging out with Sasquatch (or recovering from surgery), the Giants hurler is hitting the field with the full force of this ’90s hip-hop hit—and its trademark saxophone squeal—behind him.
“I’m Shipping Up To Boston” by Dropkick Murphys, Jonathan Papelbon Back in his unruly Red Sox days, Papelbon took the mound to this Bawstin punk rock jam.
“Hells Bells” by AC/DC, Trevor Hoffman Legendary closer Hoffman used this AC/DC track to become the first pitcher to reach the 500 and 600 save marks.
“Enter Sandman” by Metallica, Mariano Rivera Will Mariano Rivera return to baseball or go quietly into that good night of used car dealership commercials? Only time will tell.
“Flash” by Queen, Tom Gordon This classic Queen track from the deliciously campy Flash Gordon helped Tom Gordon rocket his way to a World Series ring in 2008.
“Hey Jude” by The Beatles, Takashi Saito Saito prefers this laidback Beatles tune to help him get in the zone as he approaches the mound.
“Welcome to the Jungle” by Guns N’ Roses, Joakim Soria Now that he’s no longer “The Mexicutioner,” maybe Soria wants to trade walk-up music with Saito?
“White Rabbit” by Jefferson Airplane, Trevor Cahill This mellow, Bay Area psychedelic rock hit of the ’60s is the perfect theme song for the mellow, Bay Area right-hander.
“Iron Man” by Black Sabbath, Jonathan Broxton Broxton is one of two MLB pitchers to blow a save with consecutive bean balls. Ozzy Osbourne would be proud.