B.J. Upton to go by Melvin Upton Jr. this season
The Atlanta Braves would love to unload outfielder B.J. Upton in the wake of two horrendous seasons. Instead, the team will have to settle for a change in identity from the 30-year-old.
Upton, who has batted an abysmal .196 since the Braves signed him in 2013, has announced that he will be going by his full name in 2015 rather than his nickname.
B.J. Upton will go by the name Melvin Upton Jr. this year. Upton will explain his reasoning when he reports to #Braves camp.
— Mark Bowman (@mlbbowman) February 22, 2015
As Talking Chop notes, Upton’s father, Manny, was known as “Bossman.” B.J. got his nickname when people started calling him Bossman Junior, and it stuck. Apparently it has run its course.
Perhaps Upton is trying to change his luck at the plate and thinks ditching his nickname will help. We have seen athletes grow tired of their nicknames in the past, and it usually has something to do with an image repair issue. It will be interesting to see what Upton’s explanation is.