It can be hard to learn a lot from a ballplayer’s tweets, which are mostly 140-character treatises on what you want to hear. Luckily, there is a column right next to his tweets that can reveal a little bit more. People tweet what they’re supposed to tweet, but for the most part, they follow whom they want to follow. Their follows are a window to their interests, their reading lists, their playlists and their senses of humor.
For instance, if you were to look at a certain Baseball Prospectus writer’s list of follows, you’d find that he’s inappropriately attached to two cities where he no longer lives, he’s the only 27-year-old on the planet who gets instantaneous thoroughbred racing news, and the only parody account he finds funny is this one.
Of course, sometimes you can’t learn much from baseball people’s twitter follows. Joe Maddon and Ozzie Guillen, men of many interests, follow pretty much only family members. A pioneer of tweeting managers, Manny Acta follows both Religulous filmmaker Bill Maher and megachurch pastor Joel Osteen, so gather whatever the hell you want to from that. And if your sleuthing can make any sense of these 21 follows from Bobby Valentine’s late twitter account, well, you should probably leave whatever you’re doing and put those skills to work as your town’s director of public safety.
But here are five baseball feeds—belonging to an owner, a GM, a current star, a Hall-of-Famer and the big twitter account itself—that do offer some insight into their hobbies, tastes, smut cravings and, in at least one case, whether they actually like baseball.
Weirdest follow: MAGIC Card (@OnlyMagicCard) Twitter bio: We’re the inspiring prepaid card by Magic Johnson. Need help? Tweet us or email us at help@OnlyMagicCard.com! Like Money. Only Magic.™ Follows the Bieb? Yes What we learned: Not sure how to put this, but the face of ownership for the World Series co-favorites doesn’t seem to like baseball very much. Forget about the NBA, which is obviously his first pro sports undertaking and where he got the cachet to lead the conquering empire. He follows as many NFL-related accounts—11—as he does baseball accounts, the latter 11 being mostly Dodgers players and no baseball writers. This will come in very handy when the Dodgers start 2-4 next year.
Jeff Luhnow (@jluhnow) Astros general manager Follows: 378, including dozens of fan accounts Best follow: Capt. Mike Foreman (@foreman_mike) NASA Astronaut, Test Pilot, Aerospace Engineer. Flew on STS-123, STS-129. (NERD!) Weirdest follow:A fake Jerry Dipoto account Follows the Bieb? No What we learned: The Astros general manager of a year and a week sure doesn’t seem all that sensitive, and God bless him for having this collection of follows during a 107-loss season and an offseason in which the Astros haven’t gotten much better. If you’re a prominent Astros blogger or particularly social media-savvy fan in Astrodom, your GM is probably following you. So be nice. For the most part, you have been. Or don’t be nice. He doesn’t care.
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