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Arts and Entertainment

Broxton Finally Gets His Intro

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Guest post by Zack Jerome/Special to LAist

While I stand by my previous claim that Journey’s "Don’t Stop Believin’" as our 8th inning anthem is a bigger mistake than putting mayo on french fries, I must give credit where credit is due. Recently, the Dodgers finally gave Jonathan Broxton his customized intimidating 9th inning intro.

Despite his recent injury woes, the hefty Dodgers closer is an All-Star. All-Star closers are supposed to have a 9th inning intro to intimidate the opposing team and to whip the home crowd into a frenzy.

I had been disappointed with Takashi Saito’s intro. It was a bunch of anime characters and Japanese writing dominating the stadium LEDs while George Thorogood’s "Bad to the Bone" played. I am all for anime, but this was not the intimidating Akira or Ninja Scroll anime. This was Saturday morning cartoon anime. There was nothing bad to the bone about the anime or the venerable Saito. I mean, even "Bad to the Bone" isn’t all that bad to the bone. Listen to it. Did that song ever make you want to get up and start a ruckus? It’s more the kind of song you’d see a kid in a John Hughes film bump when his parents went out of town and he put on some Ray Bans and drank right out of the milk carton. Take that parents who don’t understand me!

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Trevor Hoffman had AC/DC’s "Hell’s Bells", which worked so well it even got me excited to see a guy throw 84 mph changeups and watch San Diego Padres baseball. The entrance music and the highlight reel reminded me that Hoffman was a beast.

Another intimidating example would have to be Boston’s intro for closer Jonathan Papelbon. They play the Dropkick Murphys’ "Shipping Up to Boston", which many of you remember from Martin Scorsese’s film The Departed. It’s a song about Boston, it’s pretty tough sounding, it’s got an Irish vibe to it. It’s perfect for Boston. Combine the song with how mentally unstable Papelbon looks on any given night, and it’s works.

The ultimate closer entrance though belongs to former Dodger (and Mitchell Report victim) Eric Gagne. When it was time for the burly, bushy-haired Canadian to come in from the bullpen, all the stadium LEDs read “Game Over”. Guns N’ Roses’ "Welcome to the Jungle" began. Right when the song kicked, the bullpen doors opened and Gagne sprinted in. To me, it felt like the Manny grand slam moment every single time Gagne came in to clean up. The other team would lean on the railing in the visitor’s dugout and watch. It was pandemonium. You all remember. Sometimes I wanted to punch the guy standing next to me because I didn’t know what to do with all the energy.

Now Broxton has his intro. The stadium monitors go black for a moment and Black Sabbath’s "Iron Man" kicks in. The doors open and the big tank of a man comes flying in. Sure, the song choice is a little played out, but it will always be an intimidating track. It’s a safe call, but it’s a good call. Especially when played just before you get in the batter’s box with a sweaty bear throwing 100 mph heat at you.

So kudos to the Dodgers for doing the right thing and making the ninth inning a time to celebrate again. Mr. Broxton, use it to your advantage. What the intro giveth, a blown save can taketh away.