Follicular Follies of Youth: Freddie Freeman & Eric Hosmer
With age comes wisdom and nothing says wisdom like a big furry lip caterpillar. I think that’s how the saying goes. Both Freeman and Hosmer are phenomenal young first basemen. Their facial hair choices, however, demonstrate their overall lack of experience.
Guys, you forgot the most important facial hair feature! Clearly, both are intelligent enough players to understand the power of some face fuzz. Their lack of attention to the most mystical portion of facial grooming, while easy to explain as youthful ignorance, speaks to a need for additional seasoning.
Both players have excellent foundations to build on. Yet the projected numbers, while solid, were clearly hurt by their inattention and inversion of proper facial attire:
(courtesy of Bill James/Fangraphs)
Hosmer: 29 2B / 79 R / 20 HR / 79 RBI / .276 AVG / .342 OBP / 784 OPS
Freeman: 36 2B / 85 R /24 HR / 95 RBI / .282 AVG / .358 OBP / .839 OPS
Pretty good, right? But now, let’s add some flavor.
BAM! As a certain loud cook might say.
Different methods, but same result. Hosmer fitted with the apt Selleck mustache, looks the part of stud first baseman to build you (both fantasy and real life) team around. He looks ready to mash. Freeman, on the other hand, is a more wily of sorts, and needs the mustache to fit it. That’s the mustache of a man who’s going to smack extra base hits and play some slick D. That’s the mustache of your everyday 5-hitter.
Their numbers reflect the increased production with properly groomed facial hair. CUE UP THE MUSTACHE PROJECTION WIZARD 7000!
Hosmer: 38 2B / 98 R / 31 HR / 99 RBI / .296 AVG / .390 OBP / .905 OPS
Freeman: 46 2B / 100 R /30 HR / 109 RBI / .308 AVG / .387 OBP / .915 OPS
Look at those numbers! Clearly all that separates both Hosmer and Freeman from jumping from good young player to team cornerstone is some follicular guidance. The chinstrap look works for bouncers and bass players, folks, gentlemen are mustachioed.
BONUS: Selleck’s line if he really played in his 80’s heyday – Mr. Baseball, while amazing, does not count:
45 2B / 112 R / 50 HR / 166 RBI / .321 AVG / .409 OBP / 1.012 OPS
Soon to come: Second Basemen, so you know there is a good chance of a mustache lasershow.