Diamondbacks reliever Clay Zavada recently won an award, but surprisingly it wasn’t for posting a 3.35 ERA, 52/24 K/BB ratio, and .236 opponents’ batting average in 51 innings as a rookie this season.
Instead, he’s been named “Mustached American of the Year” by the American Mustache Institute. Seriously.
Other finalists included US Airways captain Sully Sullenberger and Cardinals shortstop Brendan Ryan, but as you can see Zavada’s “dapper, trademark handlebar mustache” proved to be unbeatable.
Here’s part of Zavada’s acceptance speech, which he gave while wearing a crown in front of John Oates and 1,000 other people who weren’t in Hall & Oates:
I am humbled that so many people in America care about mustaches and have been amazed at all of the support I’ve gotten, especially from my grandma who was really fired up about me winning.
To which CBS News reporter Bill Geist responded, “Kayne West was right.” Again, seriously.
The Twins have reportedly signed free agent shortstop Erick Aybar to a minor-league deal, LaVelle E. Neal III of the Star Tribune reported Friday. FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman adds that the deal comes with a potential $1.25 million if Aybar reaches the majors, with additional incentives based on plate appearances. He’ll be able to opt out on March 27. The team has yet to confirm the signing.
Aybar, 34, is now four years removed from his career year in 2014. He’s been in a state of steady decline since then, slashing just .234/.300/.348 with seven home runs and 11 stolen bases over 370 plate appearances for the Padres in 2017. His poor performance wasn’t helped by a fractured left foot, either, which cost him almost six weeks on the disabled list.
Still, the Twins see something promising in the veteran infielder, and reportedly intend to use him as another utility option this spring. Per Neal, Aybar will join fellow backup infielders Eduardo Escobar and Ehire Adrianza and may even (temporarily) take over for Miguel Sano at third base if Sano isn’t able to shape up for the role by Opening Day.