Brian Wilson, David Price won’t sign with Yankees because of beard policy

Brian Wilson Yankees beard
Free agent closer Brian Wilson reportedly won’t sign with the Yankees because of their facial hair restrictions. Credit: Getty Images

It’s funny what a World Series title will do. A year ago at this time, borrowing an idea from the Boston Red Sox would have been as advisable as hiring Bobby Valentine as your head of public relations (or as your athletic director).

Today, baseball is looking at the Sox as a model hardball franchise. Just look at the Phillies. They’re already blatantly stealing the “sign mid-to-low level talent for short years” approach (see Marlon Byrd signing and their reported pursuit of A.J. Pierzynski) and hoping for the best. So for now, all the things the Red Sox do are in vogue.

Even the Yankees could learn a little something from their arch-rivals this offseason because it’s quite apparent that their holier-than-thou approach to many things is as old as the median age of their 2013 roster. They need to get with the times. They could start by getting rid of the ridiculous “no beard” policy put in by George Steinbrenner in 1973.

Steinbrenner was stuck in the 1950s in the 1970s. But it didn’t matter in the latter half of that latter decade, because the Yankees won. Today, the Yankees aren’t winning. And the 40-year-old beard rule is now hurting their chances at landing top players. Seriously.


Wednesday, free agent closer Brian Wilson said he wouldn’t play for the Yankees because of their beard policy. And, if you haven’t heard, the Yankees could use a closer. Rays starter David Price, under Tampa Bay’s control through 2015, has said in the past that he would avoid the Bronx because of their facial hair restrictions.

Now, there is the possibility that things could get out of hand down the road if the Yanks actually did nix the rule. There certainly is something about that Yankees uniform mixed with infield dirt, sweat and facial hair that smells through the screen – think Pete Vuckovich as Yankees first baseman Clu Haywood in the film Major League or 1980s WWF jobber The Brooklyn Brawler (who made a comeback when pro wrestling returned to Brooklyn last year).

But there are some traditions in sports that just die, because, frankly, they weren’t all that important to begin with. Every player on the Celtics used to wear black sneakers, for instance. The Lakers used to only wear gold at home and purple on the road. The Montreal Canadiens only used to hire head coaches who spoke French.

The Yankees should borrow from their baseball-playing neighbors to the north in this situation. We’re in a players’ era. And unfortunately for pinstriped traditionalists, a lot of players these days despise razors.

 

Follow Metro Boston sports editor and columnist Matt Burke on Twitter @BurkeMetroBOS

 


News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Best nature spots for kids in New York…

When it comes to kids and nature, most U.S. parents agree: children should be spending more time outdoors. According to a recent survey by The…

Local

Easter 2014: The year's best bonnets

It's Easter, and that means it's time for Fifth Avenue to turn into a veritable catwalk of bonnet-wearers. The annual march, which kicks off at…

Local

Woman arrested for attempted kidnapping of baby in…

Authorities said that a Queens woman behind an attempted kidnapping of an 8-month-old baby boy was arrested on Saturday.

Local

Hate crime charge in attack on Sikh Columbia…

A man has been arrested and charged with a hate crime after he allegedly pulled the beard of a Sikh Columbia University professor as part…

Television

‘Mad Men’ recap: Season 7, Episode 2, ‘A…

Peggy and Lou are horrible, Bert's racist, Don is honest(ish) and Roger and Pete are frustrated. "A Day's Work" not quite worthy of "This Will Be Our Year."

Television

'Game of Thrones' recap: Season 4, Episode 3,…

The problem with the devil you know is that ignoring them doesn’t mean they simply lie in wait. It allows them time to do things…

Television

Discovery cancels 'Everest Jump Live' special in wake…

The Discovery Channel has indicated it will not be moving forward with "Everest Jump Live," a planned special about mountain climber Joby Ogwyn's effort to…

The Word

'X-Men' director Bryan Singer drama continues

  News broke late last week that "X-Men" and "The Usual Suspects" director Bryan Singer is being sued by a man who said Singer molested…

NHL

Rangers let chance at victory slip away in…

All the Rangers had to do was hold serve in a raucous Madison Square Garden — roaring in anticipation of putting a hated rival in a 2-0 series hole.

MLB

Yankees place Ivan Nova on DL with partially…

Yankees starter Ivan Nova was diagnosed with a partially torn UCL in his throwing elbow Sunday.

NHL

Rangers never thought opening round would be 'an…

You might have thought the Metropolitan Division semifinal series was going to be a rout after watching Game 1 Thursday night. The Rangers did not.

NHL

Rangers blow two-goal lead in Game 2 loss…

The Rangers got out to an early 2-0 lead in Game 2 and the Garden was rocking. But it went downhill quickly from there.

Travel

Packing: The one thing you need in your…

A new survey that looks at the travel habits of 50,000 people around the world has revealed that Western and Asian globetrotters have different priorities…

Home

Is your chair making it hard to talk?

Ever wished there was an office chair that could make impromptu meetings and discussions more private? The Cristiana Wing Chair is an asymmetrical armchair which…

Travel

Live large at these luxury hotels

From Thai boxing lessons and macabre Dracula tours to the Australian Outback, the Four Seasons hotel chain launched a series of new travel packages this…

Parenting

4 things that every summer camp should have

Alan Saltz, director of the 92nd street Y program lists things that every summer camp should have.