When you think of Astros history, the “Killer B’s” top the list. In fact, there may not be a more notable group of professional athletes that spanned two decades in Houston’s history.
Since Biggio’s retirement following the 2007 season and the Berkman trade of 2010, the Astros usage of “Killer B’s” has been used sparingly and in the past tense. It’s has become a distant memory that cause many in-and-out of Houston to look back fondly upon. And while the moniker may have been used by various teams before the Astros, this franchise is responsible for its most famous application to date.
That history though doesn’t mean that other teams do not try to use the moniker for themselves. And there isn’t anything necessarily wrong with that choice. It just lacks a bit of originality when it was used exclusively by one team for an extended amount of time. Just imagine if another Major League franchise used a term like the “Lovable Losers” or “Bombers”? There would be plenty of unhappy people.
For example, Sports Illustrated has recently tabbed a select few of Boston Red Sox as the next iteration of the “Killer B’s”.
There you have Andrew Benintendi, Mookie Betts, and Jackie Bradley Jr. gracing the cover on Sports Illustrated. All three happen to be talented ballplayers. And there is no doubt that they are part of the reason behind the Red Sox resurgence. As much as I don’t like the fact that Sports Illustrated used the nickname for another team, this is a free country. Phrases like “Killer B’s” are free to use in any context.
However, with all due respect to Sports Illustrated and the Red Sox, the “Killer B’s” are most symounous with the city of Houston and the Astros.
The group of Astros that I mentioned earlier produced a combined 217.5 WAR in their collective Houston career. Two members have been voted into the Hall of Fame. Some were in Houston longer than others, but each contributed to the most successful era of Astros baseball to date. There is no guarantee that this promising group of Red Sox outfielders will match even half of that production.
At the end of the day, the usage of “Killer B’s” for another team is not a subject to become extremely irate over. Sure, I am a bit irked by it. This post just met my need to express this viewpoint. Nicknames or monikers in baseball are not just worth losing much sleep over. This is unlike the overused cliche, “Houston, we have a problem”, which is another battle for a different day.
**Statistics courtesy of Fangraphs**