The Mask Of Zaun-O

The Orioles' Gregg Zaun has been mocked all year as nothing but a "placeholder" for super-prospect Matt Wieters. The perennial backup catcher, however, outshines young Wieters and every other pro athlete in the most important category of all: Flash animation.

Open up Zaun's official website and you're greeted by a silhouetted swordsman. This mysterious masked man slashes out a "Z" with his blade. The rips in the screen reveal our hero: a 38-year-old journeyman in a blue chest protector. As Rush's "Limelight" plays, a scrolling marquee urges you to "BRING YOUR Z-GAME" as action shots of Zaun throwing and hitting scroll by. Once inside, you can join the Zaunbie Nation Fan Club and scroll through the selections in the Z-Tunes player. There's also a contact page if you want to suggest to Zaun that he'd hit better than .200 if he'd swing a bat rather than a saber. (Not seen on greggzaun.com: the steroids that the Z-man allegedly bought from Kirk Radomski. Actually, I'm pretty sure they were Z-roids.)

All of this Zorro fetishism is for a good cause. Zaun launched the swords-and-squatting site to bring attention to Right to Play, an international organization "that uses sport and play programs to improve health, develop life skills, and foster peace." I urge you to send in a few bucks right now. For the next hour, I will match all donations of $Z.

Gregg Zaun [Official Site]