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DID YOU KNOW? Little-Known Facts about Nick Punto, American Baseball Legend

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  • Nick Punto once lit a fire by repeatedly sliding headfirst into a pile of brush and old newspapers.
  • The state of Minnesota briefly minted a new dollar coin called the Punto in honor of LNP.  Production ceased when it was discovered there was no market for currency that only had value every other year.
  • SIDE NOTE: all 8,500,000 coins that were produced now belong to Bill Smith.
  • Nick Punto knows exactly how Lost ends.  Without giving too much away, it involves dirt and headfirst sliding.  And the Smoke Monster is Rich Becker.
  • Punto once became so fundamentally sound that it caused Jason Tyner to collapse in upon himself, never to be seen or heard from again.  Though tragic, there is a silver lining, as Gardy had planned to DH Tyner and bat him 5th in that evening's game against the Yankees.
  • One time, a clubhouse attendant delivered a clean jersey and uniform pants to Punto at his locker.  Punto immediately slid headfirst into him twice.  The first slide was for washing a perfectly dirty outfit.  The second slide?  Just working on technique.
  • The only Tom Emanski video that Fred McGriff refuses to endorse is "Ignoring Your Third Base Coach at Just About the Worst Possible Time: The Nick Punto Way."
  • The Punto Slush specialty drink that Nick Punto concocts for Justin Morneau (AUTHOR'S NOTE: this is a real thing, apparently) contains equal parts Mountain Dew, resin, Icy Hot, and the tears of players grieving their inability to be as gritty or plucky as Nick Punto.
  • SIDE NOTE: given Morneau's Canadian citizenship, the resin can be swapped out for poutine or coffee from Tim Horton's, but never both, AND NEVER AFTER MIDNIGHT.  This can't be stressed enough.
  • If Nick Punto slides headfirst into your Mom, nine months later she'll give birth to Matt Tolbert.  It's science.
  • When Derek Jeter picked Nick Punto off third base in the 2009 ALCS, Gardy was so upset that he paused a full five seconds before getting mad at Cuddyer about it.
  • It is often said that giving a man a fish feeds him for a day, but teaching a man to fish feeds him for a lifetime.  The oft-neglected third part of that aphorism is that teaching a man to slide headfirst into first base will get him a $5 million club option for 2011.
  • When Nick Punto attended Saddleback College in California, he double-majored in Getting After It and Going Out There and Competing, with a minor in Battling One's Tail Off.  The fact that these were not legitimate areas of study only made him try that much harder.
  • The inspirational poem Footprints was initially written about Nick Punto.  Here's the original text:

One night I dreamed I was walking across the beach with Nick Punto.  Many scenes from my life flashed across the sky.

In each scene, I noticed footprints in the sand.  Sometimes there were two sets of footprints, other times there was only one.

This bothered me because I noticed that during the low periods of my life, when I was suffering from anguish or watching the Twins play the Yankees in the postseason year after miserable goddamn year, I could see only one set of footprints, so I said to Nick Punto,

"You promised me Nick, that if I followed you, you would get after it with me always.  But I have noticed that during the most trying periods of my life, there has been only one set of footprints in the sand.  Why, when I needed you most, have you not been there for me?"

Nick Punto replied, "The years when you've seen only one set of footprints, my child, is when I was sliding headfirst into things.  Kinda figured that was obvious."