Complacent Reynolds

Complacent Reynolds

Updated Jun 04, 2014 at 04:51PM EDT by Brad.

Added Oct 06, 2011 at 01:59AM EDT by jtwood.

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Complacent Reynolds is a photoshop meme based on an exploitable image of Baltimore Orioles’ player Mark Reynolds nonchalantly snacking on sunflower seeds from the bag.


The original photo was taken by AP photographer Winslow Townson[1] during a Baltimore Orioles game at the Boston Red Sox stadium on July 7th, 2011. The photograph shows Red Sox designated hitter David Ortiz rounding third base after hitting a home run. The Boston fans in the crowd behind him are seen cheering wildly while Orioles third baseman Mark Reynolds is idly eating sunflower seeds. The game ended with the Red Sox’ victory (10 – 4).

The image was adopted by Orioles’ fans, in part, because Reynolds’ complacency appeared to symbolize all of the problems with a team that would go on to lose 93 games and finish in last place in their division for 2011. On OriolesHangout forum, user Enjoy Terror first shared the picture in a thread titled “A picture is worth a thousand words”[2] on July 8th, 2011.


The next day, user SammyBirdLand photoshopped Reynolds into the famous “Tiananmen Square Tank Man” photo[3] and posted it in the same thread. Soon, a photoshop challenge thread ensued with hundreds of submissions uploaded by other forum users. The link to the OriolesHangout forum thread was posted on Major League Baseball forum[7] on July 10th.

On July 13th, The Baltimore Sun[4] ran an article about the original thread. Microsoft Developer Network Platforms (MSDN) blog The Old New Thing[5] picked up the story on July 14th, 2011. Baseball statistics site FanGraphs[6] ran the story on July 15th after it was recommended to them by a user on their message board. Due to the specific nature of the image, “Complacent Reynolds” has not spread widely; instead moving slowly across sports message boards where interest is the highest.

Notable Examples

External References

[1]Orioles Photo Galleries – July 7th, 2011

[2] – A picture is worth a thousand words

[3]Tiananmen Square Tank Man – Picture / 6-5-1989

[4]Baltimore Sun – Mark Reynolds’ Photoshopped photo is burning up the Internet / Posted on 7-13-2011

[5]The Old New Thing – Photoshop meme: Mark Reynolds casually eating sunflower seeds / Posted on 7-14-2011

[6]FanGraphs – Mark Reynolds, Sunflower Seeds, and Complacency / Posted on 7-15-2011

[7]MLB Forum – Complacent Reynolds

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