Enrico says: Today we have a guest post from Mr. Connor McNally who thinks he has found the key to the Phillies success. I'm not completely sold on the theory but it has certainly grown on me.
January 29th, 2008. Three words… twelve syllables… one meaning – The day the Mets traded three future Sonic Burger employees and a bag of dicks for Johan Santana; perhaps the greatest pitcher ever to grace the diamond since Henry Rowengartner dawned Cubbie blue.
Before the Mets pulled off the greatest trade rape in the history of sports, you had to feel pretty optimistic if you were a Phillies fan. Not only did the Phils have a psychological edge over the Mets thanks to last year’s historic meltdown, but they probably had the best overall team in the division. They managed to keep their core intact (Hamels, Myers, Rollins, Howard and Utley); they upgraded their bullpen (re-signing Romero and trading for Houston’s Brad Lidge); they found a suitable replacement for Rowand (signing Geoff Jenkins); and they found an answer for the season long migraine that was third base (signing Pedro Feliz).
Now here we are, one day away from the start of Spring Training (pitchers and catchers officially report tomorrow), and the Phillies seem to be the second team mentioned when talk begin about the NL East… all because of Johan Santana.
(Keep in mind that the Mets and Santana have to face the Nationals and newly acquired Elijah Dukes several times this season; and if we know anything about Elijah, it’s that he’s bat shit crazy.)
So what do the Phillies do now? Do they go out and sign Anna Benson (and her husband Kris)? Does J-Roll go on record as saying, “The Mets are the team to beat,” in an effort to weird everyone out? Or do they roll the dice with what they’ve got and hope for the best? Although all ideas are reasonable, the most logical choice is probably the latter. I’ve actually done some research and come up with a new plan that I’d like to share; one that if executed correctly would no doubt result in a ring:
Start growing facial hair. Grow it thick, weird and hard.
Crazy yes. Stupid maybe. But like a guy at a bus stop once told to me, “A man without a mustache is like an elephant without a trunk.”
If you know your Philadelphia Phillies history, you know that the last three teams to play in a World Series had hilarious amount of facial hair. And although the ‘93 and ’83 teams came up short, the ‘80 team ended up winning “The whole fucking thing!” (And this was no coincidence; the ’80 team had the highest percentage of facial hair in the history of baseball – 38 %.)
Now I don’t claim to be a historian, but speaking as a historian it’s clear to see that the harrier the team, the more successful. (To test this theory I looked back at the most successful Phillies teams since 1970.)
The ‘76 and ‘77 teams (they each won 101 games) had more mustaches than a Russian sorority house. The ‘93 and ’83 teams had almost the same amount of players who sported facial hair as the ‘80 team did (15).
Can you imagine if a handful of more people from the ’93 team decided to make the effort and boycott razors (I’m talking to you Stocker, you big bitch!)? Or if more people from the ’83 decided to stay ‘stached up after their World Series win two years earlier? Exactly! We could have lessened our “Philly sports teams suck” reputation by at least 60 %; and at the same time help put an end to us being called, “The manpon of the sports world,” by other cities.
To get the creative ball rolling and to help aide this current Phillies roster with the growing process I have provided some pictures from the past. All but two of the following players are from that beloved ‘80 team, and as you will see no two styles are the same (hey, at least we’re good at something!).
So listen up ’08 Phillies, enough with the playing-it-safe-same-old-same-old design (i.e. Fu Manchu and Chin Strap), let’s see some innovative creations (i.e. Koy Detmer Neck Beard or Cheek Beard)… all we need is 38 %.
Good luck and get the growing!
George is sporting the Pseudo-Gentleman (i.e. an ordinary mustache that is too unkempt to be the Gentleman, but too clean to be a full blown the Freelance Porn Director).
Bake is sporting the Nomad (i.e. when you’ve given up on trying to get laid, and hair grows on every part of your head, face and neck).
(Side Note - Bake McBride is best known for having the third greatest name in the history of the Philadelphia sports second to only Don Money. He also is the spitting image of Willie Lopez from the move “Ghost”. “Carl, that you Carl?”).
Gary Maddox is sporting the Nomad 2.0 (i.e. an older older, more homeless version of the original Nomad).
Vuk is sporting the Gentleman (i.e. an ordinary mustache with an emphasis on Prussian high society. It lets people know that you’re sophisticated, but can still drink the King’s pilsner and chew raw sheep carcass with the rest of the nobility).
Schmitty is sporting the Donald Southerland (i.e. a mustache that is all business; and that business is taking advantage of confused Liberal Arts co-eds with the help of the mellow and very sexy wonder drug – pot).
Ozzie is sporting the Quarter Bar (i.e. a mustache that is about a quarter of the way finished from becoming a full blown Handle Bar).
Walk is sporting the Creepy Guy in Van (i.e. a mustache that is only seen on men in windowless vans camped outside elementary schools or playgrounds. God only knows how much candy he is hiding under that huge magician’s hat he’s wearing).
Lerch is sporting the Napoleon Dynamite (i.e. this mustache needs no explanation. Lerch is what Napoleon Dynamite would look like if he was 33 and a professional baseball player. I dare you to look at this picture and say, “I spent it with my uncle hunting wolverines!” without laughing).
Sal is sporting the Sal Fasano (i.e. once again, this needs no explanation).
Juan is sporting the Soul Glow (i.e. a mustache that is only able to live if sprayed with four gallons of Soul Glow per day).
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Thanks to Connor for the post.