It is a policy that the Yankees have had in place for the entirety of their existence, but it’s time to abolish the current no facial hair policy.
Throughout their history, the Yankees have had a rule in place that prevents their players from wearing any sort of facial hair below the lip and if they did, they would receive a hefty fine. However, times are changing, and not allowing a grown man wear a well-kept beard while playing baseball sounds atrocious to me.
Personally, I do not believe this rule should still be in place. I am all for Yankee tradition and history, but it has come to a point where the players are being treated more like children than grown men. Bat flips, unique cleats, postgame celebrations, I’m here for it all.
There is nothing wrong with facial hair that is well-kept. Now Dallas Keuchel is a different story, but something like what Gerrit Cole used to rock in his pre-Yankee days look perfectly fine. We can’t sit here and act like people look “unprofessional” just because they have some hair on their face. I can even guarantee you some personel in the Yankees front office have some facial hair.
So, I decided to reach out to a few of my fellow Unhinged Yankees writers who also agree with me on this situation:
I truly believe that the Yankees need to get rid of the facial hair policy. I mean, let’s be honest, yes it’s a tradition, but it’s honestly time to get rid of it and let the players free and let them do what they want. All we want is to win the World Series and I think we should worry about that and let the players focus on playing instead of keeping their hair short and shaving their beards. Also, think about how cool players would look if the policy was gone. When you think of Charlie Blackmon what is the first thing you picture? His amazing beard.
I think that the Yankees should throw away this policy and let the kids be kids and let them do what they want. I mean, you let CC and others bypass the system for years. I know this is all a salute to the Boss as it was his rule, but it’s time to just let it go as it’s almost 2020. This Yankee team is young and dangerous, let them focus on having fun and winning and let them do whatever they want to do with their appearance. The only thing we should be worrying about is winning
Ok boomers, here’s the deal. The only reason any Yankees fans oppose the elimination of the facial hair policy is that they’re reluctant to change. These are the same people who are opposed to alternate jerseys. The argument you always hear is “Tradition! Tradition!” but to that, I say balderdash! (When trying to level with boomers, it’s best to use their lingo) This “tradition” was implemented in 1973 by the Boss himself, George Steinbrenner, at a time when bell-bottomed pants and disco music were all the rage. Facial hair was considered rebellious in nature then. The Boss wanted his players to have a constant reminder that baseball was not just a game, but also a business.
Well, business has changed since 1973. The idea of “looking professional” has evolved; business attire has become more casual as younger generations have joined the work force. I work in a professional setting, and I would estimate that about half the men I work with sport facial hair. Calling a clean shave “professional” is simply not accurate in 2019. Which brings me back to my original point. The only reason any Yankees fans oppose the elimination of the facial hair policy is that they’re reluctant to change. Don’t tell me it’s tradition. Don’t tell me it’s professional. It’s just old. Boomers, it’s time to embrace the 21st century and tear up the facial hair policy once and for all. And while we’re at it, how about some alternate jerseys?
The most anticipated things in life include waiting for midnight on New Year’s Eve, a paycheck rolling in on Fridays, and Yankees fans seeing a Yankee player’s beard in the offseason. The hair policy has been around since 1973 and hasn’t exactly shown any signs of going away, but it’s time for a change. Of course, the Yankees are undoubtedly the most tradition-rich franchise in baseball, and perhaps all of sports. Having a sense of unison that all players, no matter how big the name or how good the player, have to fall under is appealing.
However, the nameless pinstriped jerseys and road greys fill that concept fruitfully. And frankly, the idea of a beard being “unprofessional” is a bit silly. Many players, including CC Sabathia and Giancarlo Stanton have challenged the thin line of the policy in season, going a while without shaving, and fans absolutely loved it. The culture of baseball is shifting immensely with social media, and it would be an enormous marketing move for the Yankees to eliminate the hair rule. Imagine watching Clint Frazier’s luscious red hair follow him around the bases after launching a home run into the bleachers.
Aaron Judge stroking his beard after gunning a runner down at second base, wondering why teams still run on him. Or Gerrit Cole’s flow leaking out of his brand new Yankee hat after striking out the side in the ALCS. It leaves a lot to the imagination. The Yankee hair rule has already claimed many victims. Andrew McCutchen. Jason Giambi. Johnny Damon. Brian McCann. Now Gerrit Cole. Here’s to hoping the rule goes away soon.
While I do love the Yankees for their incredible history; I do believe there is a time to adjust to modern societal changes and one of those things is being able to adapt with the new movement of growing the game & allowing the new movements and waves to be present in the franchise. Expressing yourself as a player should be a right of passage and while I don’t think a player should look homeless with a wild beard or some greasy crazy long hair, a little bit of flow and stubble never hurt nobody.
I think the clean shaven thing is a little old school and could definitely be abolished, but I DON’T HATE IT, don’t get it twisted. The MLB has done a great job with allowing players to embrace their love for sneakers and such with their new openness to players and their choice of game spikes, so I think the Yankees can keep their incredible history and also adapt to the dismembering of the “no facial hair” policy. I also think the Yankees should add a navy blue alternate jersey, but that’s for another day.