TORONTO - MAY 31: Matt Garza #22 of the Tampa Bay Rays reacts to a home run by Adam Lind #26 of the Toronto Blue Jays at the Rogers Centre during an MLB game May 31, 2010 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. (Photo by Abelimages/Getty Images)
The Rays currently have one of the more interesting displays of facial hair in baseball with Luke Scott and his excessive muttonchops. The design looks as if he is either honoring Civil War General Ambrose Burnside or that he started shaving and his electric razor died on him as he started shaving one day and decided the new look was the way to go. Sadly, nobody else in baseball has helped make this a new thing.
The Rays have had very good teams in the past and present as well as some rather awful teams. The same thing can be said about players' facial hair throughout the years.
Matt Garza went through a variety of goatees in his time here but the picture at the top of this story is certainly one of the more unique approaches a Rays player has taken. He had that piece of work in May of 2010, cleaned it up in June, and promptly threw the franchise's first no-hitter in July of that season. Coincidence?
The catching situation these days in Tampa Bay has left many fans rather frustrated and longing for the days the funny facial hair tandem of Toby Hall and Josh Paul. Hall may have never OPS'd over .700 in a full season here, but he was good for the occasional home run, but funny to look at with his unique facial hair. The blonde landing strip had no clear purpose; was it to be unique or was it to give his fork a clear direction on where it needed to head on final approach?
Paul had a sub .600 OPS career for the Rays and was on the short end of the platoon with Hall but clearly had the better facial hair of the two backstops
The players are normally the ones to do the crazy facial hair and draw the attention of fans, but bench coach Dave Martinez got into the act in 2011 when he grew a beard that at one point represented 1/10th of his actual body weight. This kind of facial hair takes an entire off-season to perfect and a very understanding wife to allow it to mature into its full awesomeness.
Jim Morris may be more famously known for inspiring the movie The Rookie. Sadly, his playing time with the Devil Rays was never nearly as fantastic as his facial hair for his media photo.
Rocco Baldeli was one of the more beloved players in franchise history despite all of his issues with injuries and has now transitioned behind the scenes to do scouting work for the club. At one time during his long recovery, he looked like a scout for a hunting party in the mountains.
The best facial hair in team history belongs to a guy who appeared in just 12 games across two seasons - Dale Thayer. Thayer was a very successful reliever in the organization while in Double-A and Triple-A but saw spot duties in 2009 and 2010 before being released. He did not have the best fastball, breaking ball, or off-speed pitch but he did have an incredible cropduster
Thayer may have been new to the team, but the pitching staff quickly rallied behind him.
Thayer's cropduster was so impressive that the American Mustache Institute emailed DRaysBay in 2009 thanking us for our coverage of his labia sebucula, (Latin for "lip sweater").
People of Mustached American descent solute you for your fine blog posting on Dale Thayer's labia sebucula (Latin for "lip sweater").Carry on.
The American Mustache Institute has quite the member pledge as well:
• Lobby the administration of President Barack Obama, asking him to grow a mustache during his first term to demonstrate solidarity with people of Mustached American descent.
• Applaud any Mustached American as they walk past me on the street.
• Castigate clean shaven mortals and remind them that their bare-lipped appearance is a sign of weakness and communism.
• Dislike all things associated with Dave Navarro.
• Continue my mustache growth in the extremely rare case that it causes significant decreases in sexual activity, friendships, and approval by society at large.
• Never own a cat or watch "Sex And The City."
• Discriminate only against those with chin coverage (i.e. beards, goatees) as those forms of facial hair represent the "spousal compromise."
• Distrust clean-shaven officers of the law, and if approached by a mustache-free constable, dial 911 and proceed to a nearby police station, where a squadron of heavily mustached officers will greet me with open arms • Consider the environment before shaving my mustache.
• Never forget that every time a mustache is shaved an angel in heaven dies and falls to earth.