Nothing beats good facial hair. Whether looking back at the 1972 Oakland A’s or the modern day Boston Red Sox, baseball and facial hair go together like rally caps and desperation. The rich history of beards, chops, and general shagginess very much applies to Brewer history. Today a look at a true legend, both as a Brewer and the world of facial hair, today we look at Rollie Fingers.
Rollie Fingers was one of the first true relief pitchers, proving it an essential position for modern day pitching staffs. He was also part of the Oakland A’s team that won three straight World Series (72-74), winning the World Series MVP in 1974. All said and done, Fingers played seventeen years in the major leagues (playing 1981-1985 with the Milwaukee Brewers).
Two of Fingers most productive years were 1981 and 1982 with the Brewers. In 1981 he had 28 saves with an ERA of 1.04, in 1982 Fingers helped the Brewers reach the World Series, recording 29 saves and an ERA of 2.60. In 1981 he won both the American League MVP and Cy Young Award with the Brewers. He finished his career with 341 career saves and in 1992 was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame.
Fun Fact #1
His father played minor league baseball for the St. Louis Cardinals where he roomed with Stan Musial.
Fun Fact #2
After being released by the Brewers, Fingers was offered a contract by Pete Rose to play for the Cincinnati Reds, but owner Marge Schott would only hire clean shaven ball players. Fingers response was “Well, you tell Marge Schott to shave her Saint Bernard, and I’ll shave my moustache.”
Fun Fact #3
In 1983, Fingers and four members of his family appeared on the game show The Family Feud.
The Facial Hair
Rollie is famous for his waxed handlebar mustache. The facial hair was initially grown to win a $300 bonus from A’s owner, Charlie Finley. In 1972 Reggie Jackson showed up to spring training with a beard. The players hated it and in protest started growing their own facial hair, hoping ownership would step in. The plan backfired, instead Finley turned this ploy into a contest, offering prize money and even had “Mustache Day” at the ball park where any fan with a mustache got in for free. Eventually, most shaved their facial hair, but not Fingers, who still wears his mustache proud. Fingers mustache is so well known many refer to this style as “The Rollie Fingers” which is pretty much the biggest compliment you can receive in the world of facial hair.
What is your favorite memory of Fingers? Can we all agree it’s the greatest baseball mustache of all time? Let us know below and also feel free to suggest who you would like to see featured in Great Moments in Brewer Facial Hair.