Nolan Arenado wore the number 12 jersey until late June of 2012.
TULSA, Okla. -
In sports, a jersey number can be so much more than just a simple identification.
It can become a brand, even an icon. Seemingly now more than ever we witness high profile athletes choose numbers of sedimental value.
Such is the case of Oklahoma City's Kevin Durant. He chose 35 because of his former AAU coach Charles Craig. Craig was murdered at the age of 35.
Durant's teammate Derek Fisher, who joined the Thunder midway through the season, chose number 37 because Fisher is 37 years old.
While meaningful sediments can be found in all sports, when it comes to numbers and superstition, nowhere is it more prevalent than baseball.
Drillers third baseman Nolan Arenado, considered the number one rated prospect in the Colorado Rockies organization, recently changed his number from 12 to 20. But it wasn't for sedimental or superstitious reasons. He just liked the way it looked.
Arenado said, "I started wearing it in the fall league. I always liked big numbers and it was big... I don't know. I just started liking it."
By "big," Arenado is referring to actual surface area the number "2" takes up versus the "1." No metaphors or innuendos here.
Arenado's overall performance this season is as respectable as one will find at this level of baseball. So why change something? Drillers manager Duane Espy didn't know.
"Some guys may think it's not a good number and that's why they're not performing well maybe," explained Espy. "People do it for different reasons but I have no idea why [Arenado] did it."
Fortunately it hasn't affected anything Arenado has done on the field since the switch late last month. He recorded a base hit and reached base on error during Sunday's MLB Futures game.
And he's not concerned on what the number on Arenado's jersey will be as long as he makes it the big leagues.