Keith Hernandez Cardinals

Yep, Keith Hernandez’s mustache is going bye-bye

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I had hoped it was only a cruel, unfounded rumor, but no, it’s true:

Keith Hernandez’s mustache, which in 2007 was voted the American Mustache Institute’s greatest sports mustache of all time and earlier the same year won Newsday’s “Mustache Madness” contest, will be shaved off before the Mets ‘ final home game Sept. 27.

The event, open to the public and scheduled for approximately 11:45 a.m. in the plaza outside Citi Field , will be sponsored by Schick Hydro, with proceeds benefiting the Jacqueline Hernandez Adult Day Center in Brooklyn’s Cobble Hill . It is named for Hernandez’s mother.

I’m not sure how one gets “proceeds” to such an event when it’s open to the public, but I’ll leave the good people of Schick to figure that out.

Kind of sad. Young people don’t realize this, but there was a time in baseball when just about every damn player had a mustache. Go look at a set of 1988 Donruss or something and count the mustaches. Actually, count the guys without one. That would be way easier.

Oh well. At least Dennis Eckersley still has his.

Zack Greinke named the Dbacks’ Opening Day starter

SCOTTSDALE, AZ - FEBRUARY 21:  Pitcher Zack Greinke #21 of the Arizona Diamondbacks poses for a portrait during photo day at Salt River Fields at Talking Stick on February 21, 2017 in Scottsdale, Arizona.  (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
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Not a surprise, but a news item on a slow news day is a news item on a slow news day: Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo has named Zack Greinke as the club’s Opening Day starter.

Greinke’s first season with the Diamondbacks is not exactly what the club hoped for when he signed a six-year, $206.5 million deal in December of 2015. He dealt with oblique and shoulder issues while struggling to a 4.37 ERA over 26 starts. Greinke hasn’t pitched yet this spring, but will make his spring debut on Friday. He and the club are obviously hoping for a quiet March and a strong beginning to the season.

Either for its own sake or to increase the trade value of a player who was acquired by the previous front office regime.

“La Vida Baseball,” celebrating Latino baseball, launches

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A new website has launched. It’s called “La Vida Baseball,” and it’s all about celebrating the past, present and future of Latino baseball from a Latino perspective.

The site, produced in partnership with the Hall of Fame, has four general areas of focus:

  • Who’s Now: Focusing on current Latino players;
  • Who’s Next: Focusing on top prospects here, in the Caribbean and in Central and South America;
  • Our Life: Off-the-Field stuff, including player’s lives, lifestyles and hobbies; and
  • Our Legends: Focusing on Latino baseball history, Hall of Famers and overlooked players.

As the site has just launched there aren’t yet a ton of stories up there, but there is one about Roberto Clemente, another about Felix Hernandez and some other stuff.

The site is much-needed. Baseball reporters for American outlets are overwhelmingly white, non-Spanish speakers. Reporters, who, generally, gravitate to the players who are the most like they are. Which is understandable on some level. When you’re writing stories about people you need to be able to communicate with them and relate to them on more than a mere perfunctory level. As such, no matter how good the intentions of baseball media, we tend to see the clubhouse and the culture of baseball from a distinctly American perspective. And we tend to paint Latino players with a broad, broad brush.

La Vida Baseball will, hopefully, remedy all of that and will, hopefully, give us a fresh and insightful depiction Latino players and their culture.