TRAVERSE CITY — When Gregg Langbehn left the Traverse City Beach Bums for a job with the Cleveland Indians, things could’ve possibly gotten a little hairy.
Then Dan Rohn was quickly hired to replace Langbehn as skipper, and things were a lot less hairy.
Rohn takes the Traverse City job brings a bevy of experience to the position, a reputation for being an aggressive manager and a new rule that affected several Beach Bums.
“They told me I had to shave my beard, but Jose can keep his ponytail,” said outfielder Sean Gusrang, who had to trim off the beard he sported last season, replaced with a small goatee.
Former Frontier League MVP Jose Vargas said it’s been about a year since he cut his hair. When he heard of the new hair rules, he wasn’t sure if they’d apply to him.
“I was a little worried, though,” Vargas said. “Rohn texted us and said no beards and said he was really going to enforce that. I was a little hesitant about my hair. But he said the hair is good as long as the hat stays on. I actually haven’t cut it since the beginning of last year, so we’ll see how it goes.”
Rohn’s goal is to look a little more professional. The practice isn’t all that uncommon. The New York Yankees go even a step farther, not allowing any facial hair at all.
“How can you tell somebody of Jose’s caliber that he can’t have his hair long?” Gusrang said. “He’s the best player in the league for a couple years now, so he can do what he wants.
“The fans like to see our faces, not our beards. We can have a little goatee or a chin piece, maybe a mustache.”