Logan Morrison a hit on Twitter
MIAMI -- Logan Morrison tweets to the amusement of thousands and the dismay of his team's top executive.
It takes an entire career to build a reputation, and one tweet to lose it. As long as he understands that, it's fine.” -- Marlins president David Samson
The 23-year-old left fielder known as "LoMo" may lead the league in Twitter wisecracks.
"It's amazing how many people take you seriously," he says. "I don't take it seriously at all."
That's what worries team president David Samson. The Marlins monitor tweets by all of their employees, and Samson says he has warned Morrison that his R-rated material could carry negative repercussions.
"I'm not a dinosaur," Samson says, "but I'm not thrilled. It's very scary to me. I've told Logan, 'People are waiting for you to make a mistake. They're going to bait you on Twitter to say something inappropriate that you can never take back.'
"It takes an entire career to build a reputation, and one tweet to lose it. As long as he understands that, it's fine."
Morrison has more than 26,000 followers. That total's impressive considering he's less than halfway through his first full season in the major leagues and plays for the Florida Marlins, a team unaccustomed to attention.
Morrison estimates the age of his audience at 15 and up. He says he'll tweet with asterisks on occasion but otherwise sees no need for self-censorship because kids are going to come across the language he uses somewhere else anyway.
"If you don't want to follow me, don't follow me," he says with a shrug.
Not all of his humor is of the clubhouse variety. Many LoMo tweets can be fun for the whole family.
But Morrison also tweets about sex, body parts, the Miami Heat and humidity, odorous cabbies, the Philadelphia Phillies and the injury that sidelined Morrison in April.
"Breaking news: sprained ligament in my foot out 2 to 4 weeks," he tweeted. "Told u fantasy people not to pick me up."
Morrison says he's just being himself: a native of Kansas City, Mo., who grew up a Coast Guard brat, lost his father to lung cancer and is blessed with the ability to hit a major league curve.
It's amazing how many people take you seriously. I don't take it seriously at all.” -- Logan Morrison, on his Twitter humor
Whether he's sitting at his locker, watching TV at home or eating at a restaurant, LoMo's liable to be tapping out a message on his iPhone. When asked if he would ever tweet during a game, Morrison hesitates before saying no.
"I think he has a slight addiction," teammate John Buck says.
Morrison engages in exchanges with his Twitter followers, unlike celebrity athletes who limit their tweeting to status reports on dinner plans and such. Morrison says he understands why famous Twitterers might dislike interacting with the not-famous, but he sees it as a chance to break down barriers and show he's a regular guy.
Morrison also freely concedes he's trying to promote himself. He began using Twitter before the 2010 season at the suggestion of his agent, Fred Wray, who saw it as a way to expand the LoMo brand.
"Twitter fit Logan," Wray says. "It's an online conversation, and Logan likes to talk. He has the gift of gab."
Soon after Morrison reached the majors last July, his followers outnumbered attendance at the typical Marlins home game.
"The main goal was to get my name out there and make me more money and bring more money to the causes I support, like the American Lung Association," Morrison says. "In this market you've got to do things you wouldn't ordinarily do to get followers, and it's working."
His late father's battle with lung cancer ended in December, and Morrison traded stories about the illness with others on Twitter. After he recovered from his foot injury, his auctioned cast sold for $1,500, with the money going to the lung association.
Morrison adopted another cause: campaigning for Marlins first baseman Gaby Sanchez to make the All-Star team.
If not for Morrison's injury, he might be a contender himself. After hitting .283 in 62 games as a rookie last year, this season he's a big part of the Marlins' surprising success, batting .322 with six home runs through Monday.
When it comes to Twitter popularity, Morrison can't rival Nick Swisher (1.3 million followers), Jose Canseco (394,000) or even Ozzie Guillen (143,000). But he figures the best way to gain ground on them is with base hits.
"Obviously the better I do, the more followers I'm going to get," he says. "I'm sure it will be way up if I make an All-Star Game; it doesn't matter how original or funny I am on there."
On that point, Morrison and the Marlins brass agree.
"I've told Logan," Samson says, "no one will care about his tweets if they're coming from New Orleans (where the Marlins' Triple-A team plays)."
Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.
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