So, I was watching This Week in Baseball the other day, and John Axford was there, visiting the MLB Fan Cave and sharing his “All-Mustache Team.” Here is the team Axford selected:
C Mike Piazza
1B Don Mattingly
2B Bobby Grich
3B Wade Boggs
SS Brendan Ryan
OF John Titus
OF Dwayne Murphy
OF Kevin Bass
DH Jason Giambi
DH Steve Balboni
SP Randy Johnson
SP Jack Morris
RP Rollie Fingers
RP Goose Gossage
RP Dennis Eckersley
That’s a pretty good group. Not a whole lot to disagree with here. Overall, I take no issue with and respect Axford’s work. He is clearly an appreciator of quality mustachery.
However, there is depth in the world of mustaches, so I present to you Sorting by Teams’ official challenge to John Axford. I followed the same position breakdown as Axford, and of course, no repeats. May the best ‘staches win.
The SBT All-Mustache Team:
Catcher: Bo Diaz. He might not have had a mustache throughout his career, but the one he did have for a while was real, and it was spec-tac-ular.
First Base: Bill Buckner. Yeah, he missed a ground ball or two, but look at the intensity his mustache brings to the table.
Second Base: Frank White… because it’s ok for a mustache to be subtle, understated and solid… just like White.
Third Base: Mike Schmidt. THE Mike Schmidt.
Shortstop: Robin Yount. Went to the World Series with the Brewers playing SS. Lighter hair colour so mustache was often overlooked.
Outfield: Andre Dawson. Never gets enough credit for the mustache, people were always way too focused on his Hall of Fame numbers… or maybe on the soul patch.
Outfield: Dwight Evans. Eight Gold Gloves, no big deal.
Outfield: Dave Winfield – will be of most assistance to the team if seagulls are causing problems, or if you need a clutch double in the 11th inning in the World Series. Also, he knows his mustache is incredible.
Designated Hitter: Cliff Johnson. One of the pure DH’s of the early 1980’s. Fielding? Why would you need to do that?
Designated Hitter: Gorman Thomas. Look at the power in that Fu Manchu. Wow.
Pinch Hitter: On this 1989 Topps All-Star card, Gibson is listed as a “Pinch Hitter,” which he certainly was in the 1988 World Series. Without the mustache, would that home run have happened? I think not.
Starting Pitcher: Dave Stieb. If you can deal with all the one-hitters, he’s pretty good.
Starting Pitcher: Doug Drabek. Cy Young Award 1990, Cy Young Mustache always.
Relief Pitcher: Doug Jones. Seriously underrated mustache. Must have been the era he played in – so much competition.
Relief Pitcher: Dennis Lamp. Tell me that mustache isn’t awesome. Thick, dark, intimidating. 11-0 record as a reliever in 1985.
Relief Pitcher: Dan Quisenberry… every team needs a submariner.
In closing, I’d say we’ve got a close battle here. I will give Axford’s squad the edge in the Relief Pitching area, but Fingers, Gossage and Eckersley are kind of no-brainers – their mustaches were in a league of their own. I’d say my outfield will be the backbone of my team.
At any rate, I think we’d have a great series on our hands.