“Big Sexy” is a nickname that will live on in New York Mets history. Even if Bartolo Colon wasn’t an all-time great, he was an all-time entertainer.
Bartolo Colon talked about the origin of the name “Big Sexy” in his new memoir, “Big Sexy: In His Own Words.” The 46-year-old pitcher tells the rather simple story of New York Mets right-hander Noah Syndergaard beginning to call him that nickname in 2015.
The name stuck thereafter.
Bartolo Colon in his book, "Big Sexy: In His Own Words," on his nickname:
"Noah Syndergaard just started calling me Big Sexy in 2015, and the name stuck. I don't think I'm sexy, but if the fans like the name, I like it, too."
— Tim Healey (@timbhealey) May 7, 2020
Colon goes on to say he doesn’t consider himself sexy, but kept the name because the fans liked it. That seems very much like how Bartolo was during his Mets tenure. He was always a showman. Whether it was on the mound, in the field, or at the plate, Colon always brought much entertainment to the game.
His strikeouts were a thing of beauty and the part of his game that initially made fans support him. Then, he hit the legendary home run that spawned one of the greatest calls of Gary Cohen’s career.
His fielding was a marvel as well. Nobody can forget this behind the back flip against the Miami Marlins.
Colon quickly became a fan favorite, and not just for his sexy play at the plate and in the field. He was also a tremendous pitcher. His 2015 campaign wasn’t his most solid outing, but he really made his mark in 2016.
Colon was tasked with performing as one of the team’s top pitchers. Injuries to Matt Harvey and Steven Matz forced a larger role on the then-43-year-old. As a result, he stepped up and then some.
“Big Sexy” put together a 3.43 ERA, 6.0 K/9, 3.99 FIP, a league-best 1.5 BB/9, and was worth 3 rWAR that year. He wasn’t the greatest pitcher in baseball, but a significant reason why the Mets were able to make the playoffs that year.
Colon more than earned that nickname. He will forever be “Big Sexy,” an all-time Mets fan favorite.