The man. The Myth. The Legend. Daniel Vogelbach will represent the Mariners in the All-Star Game next week in Cleaveland, deservedly so. However, you may have noticed that, more often than not, we refer to Vogelbach as Cornelius.
This is not just some random name that we came up with (okay it is sort of that.) but one with an actual backstory. Before Vogey’s big day next week, let’s take a trip back in time and find out exactly how the Mariners “Cornelius” came to be.
This whole story begins not with Daniel Vogelbach but with Mitch Haniger. Years ago, whenever Mitch would hit a home run or make a big play, all you would see on Twitter is people tweeting “Mitchell Evan Haniger!” Sounds innocent right? Well, I liked the way this sounded so I thought I’d give it a shot for my favorite player, Daniel Vogelbach.
I was at the AAA Homerun derby in 2017 (its still a shame that he wasn’t invited to take part in the HR Derby in Cleveland) when Vogey took second to Bryce Brentz down in Tacoma. The next day, I was able to get Vogeys autograph on a ball used in the derby. He was already my favorite player in the Mariners system but he was solidifying his place as one of my favorite players in baseball all ready. You’d think that I’d know his middle name by now.
The only problem was, I couldn’t find his middle name anywhere. Nothing on Baseball Reference, nothing on the Mariners website, nothing on Wikipedia (although that has since changed) So I resulted to Twitter. I tweeted a simple question: What is Daniel Vogelbachs middle name. Nothing came of it. I even went as far as to tag Vogey in the tweets and see if maybe I could get a reply out of him, to no avail.
A few days passed and I was still no further than I was in prior attempts. So I decided enough was enough. If nobody could tell me what his middle name was, I was going to give him one myself. Thus, Cornelius was born.
At the time, it was just a joke. I would use it in place of his middle name whenever I was referring to him. A few months later, I mentioned it in our group chat and the gang from SodoMojo.com took it and ran with it. Since then, we have referred to Vogey as Cornelius and that won’t be changing anytime soon.
That didnt mean that I was done in my quest to learn his middle name. It wasn’t until a fateful game against the Rangers earlier in the season that I had finally completed what I had set out to do.
On Root Sports, the Mariners do a segment where you can tweet in questions to be asked during the broadcast. Well, naturally, I took the opportunity. I tweeted “Nobody can figure out Vogeys middle name, can you guys help? We have been going with Cornelius for the time being.”
In the bottom of the 3rd inning, the question was asked. I was actually at that game so I didn’t get to see it live but luckily I had the help of the guys at Sodo Mojo losing their minds in our group chat. Then they sent me a video of the moment. Angie Mentink did us all a service by letting us know that Vogelbachs real Middle name is Taylor.
But there was more. They loved the idea of Cornelius. Angie yelled “DANIEL CORNELIUS VOGELBACH” as if Vogey was in trouble and Dave Sims noted that the name might just stick. It was a pretty big moment for us here at Sodo Mojo.
Over our recent campaign to get Daniel to the Home Run Derby, the hashtag #Cornelius4HRDerby was born and people outside of Sodo Mojo began latching on. Slowly but surely, Cornelius was beggining to stick.
The day before the HR Derby announcement, I went to a game between the Mariners and the Cardinals and I brought a sign that just said Daniel Cornelius Vogelbach for HR Derby. Im still not sure if Vogey saw it or knows about it but it sure got the attention of those around us who started referring to him as Cornelius as well.
That’s how Cornelius came to be. Vogelbach has become somewhat of a folk hero for the Mariners due to his outgoing personality and his record breaking homeruns. Having a nickname other than “Vogey” seems like a good start to Vogeys legacy.
Now, our next goal is for Vogelbach to wear “Cornelius” on the back of his Players Weekend jersey in August. Then we will have really made it. For now, however, we will continue to spread the good word of “Cornelius” and hopefully sway the world to become fans of Daniel Vogelbach. Long Live the Mariners and Long Live Cornelius.