Tuesday, December 13, 2011

DAHOF Top 100 -- #86 Rollie Fingers

On the first day of spring training for the 1972 season, Reggie Jackson showed up with a beard. In protest, Fingers and a few other players started going without shaving to force Jackson to shave off his beard in the belief that management would also want Jackson to shave. Instead, Finley, ever the showman who would do anything to sell tickets, offered prize-money to the player who could best grow and maintain their facial hair until Opening Day on April 15 against Minnesota. Fingers went all-out for the monetary incentive offered by Finley and patterned his moustache after the images of the players of the late 19th century. Taking it even further, Finley came up with “Moustache Day” at the ballpark, where any fan with a moustache could get in free.

Catfish Hunter and Ken Holtzman also went for the bonus, but Rollie, with his Snidely Whiplash, took the prize. The players would become known as the “Moustache Gang”.

Although most former A’s players shaved their handlebar moustaches after the team traded most of their players in 1975–76, Rollie maintained his after signing with the San Diego Padres and still has the moustache today.


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