A Lesson in the Anatomy of Kevin Youkilis
On Wednesday, Craig Robinson, the creator of Flip Flop Fly Ball, a site full of his baseball-related art and infographics, released a unique portrait of former Red-Sox-player-turned-Yankees-third-baseman Kevin Youkilis. The “Kevin Youkilis Anatomical Drawing” first appeared on The Score’s Getting Blanked blog. It’s awesome:
Robinson created the ridiculously intricate piece—he even included a “Boo”-to-”Youk” converter and a bottle of Manischewitz—with an iPad app called Brushes, and added the annotations in Photoshop.
“I think the initial spark came about when I got to thinking about the Yankees’ facial hair policy, this vaguely amusing idea that all of Youkilis’ beard hair would be kind of backed up inside his body,” Robinson said in an email. “That was about a week ago. The idea floated around of the weekend, I made a few notes, and on Monday I sat down, drew the body outline and started thinking about the space inside his body, starting with the more obvious baseball-related stuff, like the Moneyball/Greek God of Walks, [Tigers pitcher and Youkilis nemesis] Rick Porcello, and batting stance references. Then it just got more and more absurd. There’s something about doing drawings sometimes when you get into a real groove and it’s an absolute joy, and this was one of those cases.”
Youkilis’ status as a physical oddball has endeared him to Robinson, who loves illustrating the three-time All-Star. This drawing, from 2010, is called “Kevin Youkalyptus.” Awwww:
“I think there’s something entirely charming and wonderful about athletes who look kinda ‘wrong.’ Like the way Michael Johnson sprinted,” Robinson said. “Youkilis, to me, looks like he should be terrible at any sport. Yet he’s a great baseball player. Plus, and this isn’t just a Youkilis thing, I find baseball a perfect sport for projecting your funny thoughts. We spend so much time staring at these players, and it’s only really a very short amount of time that they are doing something. I mean, a Youkilis at-bat … so much of what we see is him doing his little thing before the pitcher throws the ball in his direction. All of that time, we’re watching the batter not really do anything. A friend of mine said recently that I have a bunch of noises that I make when I’m mid-sentence, kind of space-filler noises, long ‘ummm’ and ‘errr’ noises or a small two note whistle. We all get to see the physical versions of those when players are in the batter’s box.”
Robinson, a freelance illustrator whose collected works are now available in a coffee table book, is a huge Youkilis fan. That shows, no matter how goofy his depictions of Youk may appear. “It should be noted,” Robinson said, “that this is done with love.”