When the Twins announced they'd removed four players off their 40-man roster on Wednesday, perhaps the least surprising of the names was Shairon Martis. In fact, fans who checked out on the team long before September may not have even known he was on the team. But Les Wells noticed. As the President of the Shairon Martis Fan Club, he had to notice.
"Yeah, it's a bummer," said the 23-year-old college student from Maplewood. "When I started the Fan Club, I had no illusions that he'd be a long-term member of the roster, if he made it here at all. He's bad at pitching, you see. That's a giant hurdle to overcome if you're a baseball pitcher."
Wells said he created the Fan Club after being motivated by his old roommate Steve, "that fucking a-hole."
"Steve is just a dick, and he was always giving me shit about my first name being 'Leslie,' because it's a girl's name," said Wells. "For one, real mature, right? And for two, it's a family name. Anyway, that was right around when the Twins picked up Shairon in a trade with the Pirates last year, and I was like, whoa. That's damn near 'Sharon.' Done deal, he's my guy."
Wells soon went about buying the domain name for "www.shaironmartisFCofficial.com" and creating Facebook and Twitter accounts for the fan club. "I did it that same night. I was pretty drunk, and I mentioned Steve was just a hardcore dingus, right? God he's the worst.
"In retrospect, it was a stupid idea that I immediately regretted. I should have just punched Steve."
Wells said the website has had close to no traffic. "People don't even get here by accident," said Wells. "It's impressive in its complete anonymity. I think it had negative hits in July. How is that even possible?"
The only other member of the Shairon Martis Fan Club is retired Fargo schoolteacher Roger Wilkie.
"I'll be honest, I wasn't paying too much attention and thought his last name was Maris," said Wilkie, 68. "I grew up rooting for (North Dakota native) Roger, so I figured he must be a relative."
Wells said he has no intention on disbanding the Fan Club for now.
"The domain is paid for through June 2014. So, yeah, I'll just hold onto it until then. After that, I'll maybe just set up 'www.steveisaprick.com' and be done with it. That one's gonna get some eyeballs."