It’s time for some breaking news here on Through The Fence Baseball! You won’t read this on any of the popular daily sports websites.
You also won’t see this report on the Elias Sports Bureau, Baseball-Reference.com or FanGraphs. In honor of the Los Angeles Dodgers signing “Fear the Beard” Brian Wilson, it’s time for a list of the Best Beards in Los Angeles Dodgers history!
I know that Brian Wilson has only been in Dodger Blue for hours, but his signing demands this list! Beards don’t get much cooler than Wilson’s long, dark black ensemble. Even if Wilson blows out his elbow at Rancho Cucamonga and never toes the rubber at Chavez Ravine wearing the blue-scripted “Dodgers” shirt, he makes my list.
I love the Brian Wilson signing by the Dodgers. What is there to lose, but a million or so greenbacks? If Wilson can come back anywhere close to his 48-save, 1.81-ERA form from 2010, he solidifies the Los Angeles bullpen and gives the team a veteran presence in the late innings.
Another thing that Wilson brings to the Dodgers is a guy who can step in for closer Kenley Jansen in the ninth inning if he has made too many consecutive appearances. Still another reason the Wilson signing makes sense? It takes him away from the San Francisco Midgets and possibly the Arizona Diamondbacks.
Without further ado, here are the Best Beards in Los Angeles Dodgers History:
1. Casey Blake, 3B – I haven’t confirmed this yet, but there is a strong indication that when Blake was born in 1973 in Des Moines, Iowa, he came out of his mother’s womb with his trademark full brown beard. There definitely wasn’t a better groomed beard in Los Angeles history than Blake’s, and perhaps not even in all of MLB. Blake’s beard was as close to perfect as it gets. There were some nights when I was watching a game when Blake would go 0-for-4, but I couldn’t get frustrated with him because of that beautiful beard! Yes, Casey, we tip our caps to your manly beard, too!
2. Brian Wilson, P – I can hear some of you saying now, “Give me a break! How can you put a guy on this list when he hasn’t even appeared in a game yet?” You know how? I write for TTFB, that’s how! Brian Wilson’s beard is the stuff of legends, and I think it’s cool that he has bolted San Francisco to come to Los Angeles to make some postseason noise. My two favorite teams in MLB are the Dodgers and whoever is playing the Midgets, but I have to admit that I used to enjoy watching Brian Wilson close out games and cross his arms as he raised them to the heavens. I’m not sure what was more mesmerizing, Brian Wilson’s piercing blue eyes or that pitch black beard! Admit it: I’m not the only person who wants to put my hand in that black beard to see what it feels like! Is it soft like a bunny, or is it coarse like steel wool? Inquiring minds need to know!
3. Matt Kemp, OF – While Kemp’s time on the disabled list has risen and his production at the plate has dropped, one thing has remained constant – his neatly trimmed beard. Kemp’s bat may be on the back of milk cartons all over Los Angeles, but he hasn’t lost his beard mojo. Whether he lets it get full and dark or clips it close, Kemp’s beard has that GQ look. I would personally rather have Kemp trade his GQ look for the cover of Sports Illustrated, but that will hopefully change once his hamstring fully heals.
4. Todd Coffey, P – You can be forgiven if you had to put on your thinking cap to even remember Coffey. He didn’t exactly have a stellar one-year career in Los Angeles, finishing with a 1-0 record and a 4.66 ERA. However, that bright red beard that Coffey sported on the mound was almost as intimidating as his ample gut. The 6-foot-4 Coffey was listed at 240 pounds. If Coffey weighed 240, Rick and Paul Reuschel (just Google them, you’ll get a kick out of it!) are the best-looking brothers in the history of MLB!
5. Eric Gagne, P – I debated whether to put Gagne on my list because he ticked me off so much last year trying to rat out Dodger teammates from almost 10 years ago just to sell his book. In the end, though, I had to include “Game Over” Gagne on the best beard list. When Gagne was in the midst of setting his consecutive saves record of 84 in 2002-03, he sported one of the most unique beards in the game. Although it was just whiskers on his chin, Gagne qualifies for this list because of his devil-horned goatee and his 100-mph fastball.