Movember Special: A starting lineup of baseball’s best beards

DENVER, CO - AUGUST 30: Charlie Blackmon
DENVER, CO - AUGUST 30: Charlie Blackmon /
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First Base—Eric Thames, Milwaukee Brewers

There were a few contenders for best beard at first base. Eric Hosmer’s beard is smooth and sleek and has a well-defined border that is appealing to the eyes. It probably looks good in the Chevy Midnight edition Colorado truck he won as the 2016 All-Star Game MVP.

Matt Carpenter’s beard takes Eric Hosmer’s beard to the next level. It’s thicker and bolder, but starting to get a touch of the elder statesman gray. It also includes a bolder mustache on the upper lip. Based on my limited research, the mouth in the center of Matt Carpenter’s beard doesn’t smile very often.

Carlos Santana’s beard stands alone, without any need for a frivolous mustache. It’s fuller on the sides and keeps company with the gold chain around Santana’s neck. Of all the contenders for best beard at first base, Carlos Santana’s beard was the only one to make the playoffs this year.

While Hosmer, Carpenter, and Santana have nice enough beards, the winner here is Eric Thames’ beard, which is the source of all his power. Before the beard, Thames was a major league washout who hit .250/.296/.431 in 181 games with the Blue Jays and Mariners in 2011-12. He then took his talents to South Korea, grew a beard, and returned with a vengeance. Now the beard is his trademark. Without it, he’s unrecognizable. Just ask these Milwaukee fans:

Thames’ beard is thicker and fuller than the beards of Hosmer, Carpenter, and Santana. It extends from his chin to his chest like a wiry jungle. It looks like a beekeepers’ beard if bees were jet black. Thames’ beard is also versatile, having played both first base and the outfield this year. It’s a menacing beard when Thames is hitting bombs, like he did 31 times this year. It’s also a cultured beard, like when Thames toured the MillerCoors facility with teammates Corey Knebel and Oliver Drake in anticipation of crafting their own beer. Let us all raise a glass of suds to Eric Thames’ beard, the best beard of any first baseman.