Brian Wilson fought hard to make it back to MLB after Tommy John surgery in 2012. The relief pitcher returned to the Los Angeles Dodgers for the final weeks of 2013 and it’s safe to say that he didn’t miss a beat. In 18 appearances with the Dodgers, Wilson put a 0.66 ERA on the board, while fanning an average of one batter per inning. But Los Angeles ultimately came up short in the playoffs and now Wilson is a free agent on the open market.
Of the teams expected to make a run at the relief pitcher, the New York Yankees were near the top of the list. However, you can cross the Bronx Bombers off the list of teams for Wilson in 2014. Why, you ask? The reason is simple – the beard. As much as Wilson is known for his electric stuff on the mound, he’s of course equally known for his facial hair. The Yankees have a strict policy against facial hair and Wilson’s agent has announced that the relief pitcher is absolutely unwilling to shave it.
Sure, it sounds crazy, but this is Brian Wilson we’re talking about. His beard is his true trademark.
On top of facial hair, I don’t think anyone in their right mind would want to follow in Mariano Rivera‘s footsteps. The next Yankees’ closer is going to have an all-time great legacy to follow and I don’t see Wilson (or many players) wanting to deal with that.
The Beard will find a better fit and although he might not make as much money as he would have in the Bronx, he’ll still get paid handsomely.