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Former Cleveland Indians star Travis Hafner reveals story behind ‘Pronk’ nickname: 'Beyond the Dugout'

We go 'Beyond the Dugout' for an in-depth conversation with Travis Hafner.

CLEVELAND — Get to know more about Travis Hafner as we go "Beyond the Dugout" with the former Indians star.

3News' Dave Chudowsky: On the hot seat with me for Beyond the Dugout is former Indians great Travis Hafner, you know him as “Pronk.” Good to see you.

Travis Hafner: Thanks for having me.

Chudowsky: First off, let's just ask you for anyone who doesn't know. Where did “Pronk” come from?

Hafner: It was kind of a mix between project and donkey, and then we shortened it up to “Pronky” and then it eventually got to be “Pronk.” Bill Selby helped give me that nickname, and it's kind of stuck ever since.

Chudowsky: It's one of the best nicknames I can remember. Did you enjoy it?

Hafner: I loved it. Yeah, I loved it. I think I had it on the backs of some T-shirts and stuff. On bats and stuff I put “Pronk.”

Chudowsky: And “Pronkville.”

Hafner: Yeah, I actually-didn't love the name Travis, so replacing that with “Pronk” I enjoyed that quite a bit.

Chudowsky: Oh, well there you go. We really are going beyond the dugout here. All right, favorite moment for you as a member of the Indians?

Hafner: Probably would have to be just the experience of the 2007 playoffs and beating the Yankees in the first round and getting to celebrate in Yankee Stadium was pretty special.

Chudowsky: Yeah that was amazing. Teammate you remember most, whether because you like them the most or there's just something about them?

Hafner: I guess what stands out right now as we're talking is… Jim Thome was kind of like a role model for me growing up and in the minor leagues. So to have him as a teammate, and I think was in 2012, that was a lot of fun and pretty special for me.

Chudowsky: Favorite restaurant in Cleveland?

Hafner: I like Johnny's on Fulton, and Batuqui. Tt's a great Brazilian spot.

Chudowsky: Favorite thing to do with the family?

Hafner: We go up to the baseball fields a lot and we hit. Go bowling.

Chudowsky: Love bowling.

Hafner: Yeah, I’m terrible at it.

Chudowsky: No 300s in your world?

Hafner: Maybe a 300 series if everything goes well. (both laugh)

Chudowsky: A little rapid fire for you before we let you go. Spring or summer?

Hafner: Well this is not rapid fire apparently, but summer in Cleveland and then spring when we're in Florida.

Chudowsky: Well, there you go. I like that. Early worm or night owl?

Hafner: Definitely early.

Chudowsky: Bagel or croissant?

Hafner: Bagel.

Chudowsky: Veggies are fruit?

Hafner: Veggies.

Chudowsky: Coffee or tea?

Hafner: Coffee.

Chudowsky: Wine or beer?

Hafner: Wine.

Chudowsky: Bubble gum or sunflower seeds?

Hafner: Bubble gum.

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