Beards And Baseball – What’s With The Trend?
Sports usually play as the breeding ground for various trends, and most recently it has been beards in baseball. Most sports, especially contact sports, tend to stray away from excessive facial hair simply because it can cause lots of discomfort, but this doesn’t seem to be the case for baseball players as more and more baseball players are growing facial hair. Not only have people been noticing the increase in popularity with it, but the players themselves are actually wanting it to become a trend – and it has. This last season’s World Series match-up between the Red Sox and Cardinals had the title of “Battle of Beards”.
So what’s the reasoning behind the recent support for bearded men in baseball uniforms? Well, players don’t really seem to think it gives anyone an advantage. Beards have been linked to potential intimidation factors. For instance, a man with a grizzly beard that goes down to his collar-bone will look a lot more intimidating than a man who is clean shaven. Beards have attributed to making people older, and as Clayton Kershaw has noted, “I don’t want people thinking they’re facing a 12-year-old out there”. Besides the intimidation factor, it also brings a bit of relief as players don’t have to worry about pulling out their best electric shavers every morning to trim their facial hair.
While they may be looking to grow their beards out, don’t think that they aren’t kept nice and neat. Some of the players have gone on record saying that their wives and girlfriends actually support the growth of facial hair as they believe it increases their sex appeal. However, that is only if the beard is kept. In order to get a nice looking beard you must invest in a good beard trimmer so it doesn’t grow out of control. An out of control beard doesn’t look quite as intimidating as it brings more of a sloppy appearance.
Players also seem to be enjoying the rising trend as well. Dodgers’ Howell says that it, “feels like a cap” and that he can “hide behind it” when he’s on the field. This gives him a new sense of confidence and can be on camera without having others judge his facial appearance. Maybe beards, a thing that was thought to bring discomfort to the sporting environment, will now be used as an advantageous weapon.