by Tom Finkel
Is Unreal the only one who flashes to images of sci-fi monsters upon hearing the name Mike Maroth?
The new Cardinal hurler’s surname is just a quick anagram away from Mothra -- the gigantic lepidopteran that gobbled up scores of Japanese villagers during a run of 1960s schlock thrillers. (One can only hope Maroth eats up innings with similar abandon.)
Intrigued by this wordplay phenomenon, we threw a few Cardinals players and staff into the text tumbler at Internet Anagram Server. Outfielder Juan Encarnacion returned as the colorful Cancan Ninja Euro while injured shortstop David Eckstein came back A Dick Invested.
Tony La Russa, meanwhile, returns a whopping 2,497 alternatives. Favorites: Analyst Ours, Satan Sourly and Lunar Ass Toy -- which, if it isn’t already a movie title, sounds as out-of-this-world outrageous as anything Japanese filmmakers could ever dream up.