What Is It With Ballplayers And Beards?

Today’s news that the Yankees signed the arbitration-eligible Chad Gaudin and Boone Logan didn’t exactly send me into the streets shouting with excitement. My reaction was more like this.
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Sure, it’ll be nice to have extra arms available in the pen. But what caught my attention was the pre-Yankees facial hair sported by both pitchers. I mean, seriously. Here’s Boone when he was with the White Sox. What was he thinking?
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Not only are his eyebrows the size of my arms, but that thing on his chin could be used to paint houses.
Paint Brush 4 (Small).jpg
And how about Chad Gaudin when he was a Cub?
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His beard was like something he clipped off the head of Raggedy Andy and taped to his face.
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Neither is as bad as this though.
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I guess what I’m asking is why? Can some of the guys who read this blog explain the appeal of these beards? I’m not anti-beard, given that my husband has had one since the day I met him and wouldn’t shave it off for anything. I’m just not getting the billy goat look.
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How do you not end up with ketchup all over it every time you eat a burger? How do you not find a nest of hornets in it? How do you not know when it’s time to say, “Enough?”
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Just asking.
P.S. Since he was mentioned in the comments, here’s Ryan Franklin and his chin music. Euwww.
frankin.jpg

38 comments

  1. Jane Heller

    I’m glad the post cheered you up, Cat. You deserve a laugh after the off-season you’ve had so far. Hope your sister’s health is improving every day.

    Chad Gaudin looks much better as a Yankee, Rob, and I’m sure Boone Logan will too. He couldn’t look any worse!

  2. crzblue2

    Jane,
    That reminds me of all the fur that William Hurt was sporting at the Golden Globe. I hardly recognized him. And you are right the show was boring. I had the TV on but I was reading at the same time. I have no clude why guys like to sport the goat look. yuk
    Emma
    http://crzblue.mlblogs.com/

  3. hrcoyankeefan@comcast.net

    Also the ugly-dude closer from St Louis, Franklin. I actaully wanted to see him fail because his facial hair is so offenseive to me. And why we are at it, guys, why would shave your heads? Don’t you realize your only going to have hair up there for a limited number of years?

    Please help me and Jane and the rest of us She-Fans to understand.

    Laurie

  4. dschaub@gpo.gov

    Beards. Goat(ee)s. Facial Hair. Well, here goes…
    Jane, I guess it’s a big Manly Man Thing to grow Something because (a) you CAN (and not all guys can, for whatever reason — it comes out patchy or not at all); (b) you can be YOU — totally individualize it, like those pitching clowns; (c) giving props to some fave actor/playa/some role model influ in your life? — and (d) lots of guys seem to really HATE to shave — esp. the current generation. My wife and I have had Shaving Wars with both of our boys…Son #1 grows goofy goatees and that “thing” in-between lower lip and chin from time to time. But it’s Son #2, our Rebel Rebel, who NEVER wants to shave (we had yet another argument last night about it), hasn’t shaved for two weeks — goes back to college next weekend, and he can look like the Taliban for all we care when he’s gone. But he has a JOB now, and you’d think…oh, nevermind. Every time we try to get somewhere with logic, Rebel Rebel points out how EVERY guy on TV and in the movies is always sporting a two-day to week-long growth. We think it’s Just Plain Lazy. As for me, I grew a mustache in 1973…shaved it off once for a wedding, grew it back, still there…so what can I say? All we can fall back on as parents is “At least it’s not a tattoo!!” Small consolation. Ladies, it’s gratifying to learn that most of you think these growths are as absurd as we do. Tell your men — you ain’t exactly “Dead Sexy” with that thing growing out of you…maybe that’ll work…?!

  5. Jane Heller

    I saw William Hurt, Emma! OMG, he looked ridiculous. I hope all that hair was for a part he’s playing, not because he thought it looked good.

    Cat, on Wednesday night I’m doing an event at the Borders in Goleta (just north of Santa Barbara) to promote The Muse Madams, the writing workshop I teach. My co-workshop leader and I will be offering aspiring writers free critiques of their work. We were expecting a nice group of people attending, but the heavy rain and flooding could make it a night to forget.

    Bobby Jenks of the White Sox is the guy with the pink fuzz, Jenn. I guess it’s his attempt to look quirky or eccentric or whatever. To me it looks just plain idiotic.

    I posted a pic of Franklin for you and Laurie, Jeff. And you’re right: his beard is nasty. I can understand not shaving, because who wants to shave? And I can understand the type of beard my husband has (he does trim it). But why oh why do the players think the paint brush look is appealing? Thanks for the heads up about the ranking.

    Laurie, see his pic. I agree with you: it’s uuuugly. I don’t get the shaved head thing either unless you’re Andre Agassi and you’re losing your hair anyway. But I would like some guys to weigh in on this subject!

  6. mhugill@verizon.net

    I asked my hubby why they do this and his response was “because we can” Then he immediately asked me why I needed so many pairs of black shoes. HUH? That has nothing to do with it but I responded with, “because I can”

    Hey, I like a porn ‘stache like Tom Selleck can rock like no other but on Giambi not so much. I love a goatee close cropped like my husband wears but NOT the Goat Look like these fellas. Oh and a beard like George Clooney, now that is swell and close cropped and honestly does the man ever look bad? He can wear most anything but even George couldn’t pull off these fugly beards. The goat/paint brush look really creeps me out!!

    Peg

  7. Jane Heller

    Yeah, George would have taken great satisfaction in getting these guys to shave, Paul. I hope he was paying attention when Damon shaved. But we’re still waiting for someone to explain to us WHY these players think beards look good.

  8. Jane Heller

    Strike that last comment, since the order of the comments is weird once again.

    Dave, you gave us a very good explanation for the beards. Several, in fact. Sounds like some guys want to make a statement. Some are lazy and don’t want to shave. And some do it “because they can.” As for your Rebel Rebel son, he’s rebelling! LOL. We all did things to annoy our parents, didn’t we? I like the look of Michael’s beard. I just don’t like that it feels like Brillo!

    Peg, so your husband subscribes to the “because they can” theory. I love his comeback about the shoes. HAHAHA! I think mustaches are fine and in general I don’t have a problem with beards at all. It’s just THESE beards that creep me out – the ones that don’t belong on people’s faces! And yes, George Clooney can’t look bad. It’s physically impossible. 🙂

  9. dschaub@gpo.gov

    Jane…you Hipster, you…ahead of the curve once again…
    Today, as I’m surfin’ thru espn.com, I see a group of “Football Funnies” pictures, with wisecracks attached…one of them has Brad Pitt huggin’ and shakin’ hands with some playa on the sidelines, pre-game (in “Nawlins,” I believe), sporting an absolutely HIDEOUS long goatee with mustache. And the caption provided is…
    “Yeah, it’s for a movie. I’m playing a relief pitcher in a baseball movie.”
    Home Run, Ms. She-Fan!!!

  10. Jane Heller

    Dave, I saw a pic of Brad Pitt and that awful beard a few days ago but I didn’t know he made the crack about the movie. Is he really playing a relief pitcher or was that just a joke? I know he’s supposed to be in “Moneyball.” I just don’t know which character he’s going to play.

  11. Jane Heller

    Maybe you’re right and it’s a bullpen thing, Lorcan. Relievers have plenty of time out there, just sitting on the bench waiting to come into a game. Could be boredom that makes them do it!

    And superstition could play a part in the beard thing, A.J. I hadn’t thought of that. Giambi’s ‘stache did fit into that category. Damon had a lot of hair when he was with the Red Sox, and it was fun seeing his new look when he put on the pinstripes. But the beards? Yuck.

  12. dschaub@gpo.gov

    Wow, Jane…maybe we’re onto something with Brangelina… I had just ASSUMED it was an espn-supplied make-believe wisecrack, but maybe not? Certainly would explain the outright Fu Manchu Gone Berserk hideousness of Goat-Eee!
    As for relief pitchers being…um…a different breed…well, just THINK of how many closers back in the day who had rather unique ‘staches: Rollie Fingers #1, with that handlebar… Goose, Sparky Lyle, Dick Tidrow for Our Boys…how about Al Hrabosky, “The Mad Hungarian”? And “Quiz” Quisenberry…and Sammy Stewart, Baltimore’s “Throwin’ Swannanoan” — seemingly EVERY member of Harvey’s Wallbangers, the ’82 Brew Crew…sheesh, don’t get me started — but a lot of modern rock bands have hideous goatees or something, like Fred Durst did with Limp Bizkit (wearing his red Yankee hat backwards), so maybe that’s what started it…?

  13. hrcoyankeefan@comcast.net

    I’ve had the thought that the whole hair thing is a backlash of non-Yankee players as in “I’m not a Yankee but at least I get hair!”. Did you ever notice how all the players claim to be free spirits, that their hair shows their individuality then they become a Yankee and they gladly cut it all off. All players with hair just wanna be a Yankee.

    Laurie

  14. Jane Heller

    I guess relief pitchers really are a different breed, Dave. The Mad Hungarian. LOL. I remember him. It all makes Mo seem that much more unique, doesn’t it? No beard. No ‘stache. Just heavy metal entrance music that he didn’t even select and had never heard of.

  15. lorcanmccormick

    bullpen pitchers are their own breed. Remember Mike Timlin at the second world series parade for the Sox? The fake parrot and all. I think the only nearly down to earth bullpen pitcher is Rivera right now. Other then that almost every bullpen pitcher is crazy.

  16. Jane Heller

    I do remember Timlin, Lorcan. LOL! Joe Nathan of the Twins seems pretty normal, relative to all these others we’ve mentioned. But for the most part they’re nuts!

  17. Jane Heller

    Interesting, Laurie. I’m thinking of all the “free spirits” who were only too happy to shave when they became Yankees: Damon, Swisher, A.J. and others. I guess the pinstripes are worth a trip to the barber!

  18. diane.anziano@gmail.com

    Jane, my husband has a mustache (used to be a handlebar back in the day but now its just a “normal” stash) so I can’t be too negative about facial hair but a beard is usually weird (see commercial–lol) — the only one I will stand for right now is QB Mark Sanchez’s – he said he is not going to shave because he thinks his facial hair has been good luck for the Jets. We’ll go with it for now but he’s way too good looking to keep it once the win the Super Bowl. Sorry to keep talking about the Jets on a Yankees blog but its so exciting. But let me say right here that although I am a huge Jets fan, my heart belongs to The Bronx Bombers and it always will.

  19. Jane Heller

    Diane, my husband had a beard AND a mustache and I like the way he looks. I just don’t get the weirdo beards you see on some players. I hope Mark Sanchez’s facial hair is the lucky charm for your Jets and they win the Super Bowl. I know how excited you are about their great run, so feel free to brag about them all you want!

  20. Jane Heller

    A “lightly covered hairy face” sounds just perfect for a 20-year-old college dude, Matt. Just don’t add one of those gross beards!

    I guess so, Lorcan. We’re stuck with it.

  21. rrrt

    Jane, I’m a few days behind again, but this entry cracked me up. I have never seen such a hideous collection of hair all in one place before. Calling them “beards” is being generous – they remind me more of small dead animals or pubes gone wild (sorry, I know that’s a nasty though but it’s what pops into my head). If there’s one thing positive I can say about the Yankees, it’s that at least they make their players look presentable.
    Sue
    Rants, Raves, and Random Thoughts

  22. Jane Heller

    They do look like dead animals, Sue! HAHAHAHA! And pubes gone wild! When I was a teenager I thought the Yankees were mean and cruel for making players shave. Not anymore.

  23. angelsgirl012

    p.s. has anyone seen brad pitt? My goodness! I’m thinking it’s just for a new role coming up because that thing is hideous!

  24. Jane Heller

    Mimi, I saw Brad Pitt and he told a reporter the beard was for a role. In fact, he said he was “playing a relief pitcher.” LOL. Whether it’s true or not, I don’t know. But I agree that it’s hideous!

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