Marlins remove ban on beards for players
JUPITER, Fla. -- The Marlins aren't making any "fear the beard" claims, but the organization no longer is frowning upon them.
Miami has officially relaxed it's facial hair policy, and beards are now allowed.
"This year, we're going to let them have beards, but they have to keep it trimmed up," manager Mike Redmond said.
The same also holds true for slightly longer hair.
"We just don't want it to be sloppy," Redmond said.
For the players, it's a small victory. From the organization's point of view, it's being flexible.
"We're just always adjusting," Redmond said.
For many years, the Marlins have had a pretty tight policy when it came to facial hair and longer hair in general.
In 2006, the policy was even tighter in Joe Girardi's lone season as manager.
In recent years, players have sported goatees, again, as long as they were groomed.
Even last year, Ricky Nolasco sported a mild beard on occasion, but he had to keep it closely trimmed.
The modified rule benefits reliever Chaz Roe, a non-roster invitee who came to camp with a longer beard than most. The beard stays, but it isn't as wild.
Hair on the back of the neck also has to been under control.
Lefty Brian Flynn said he had 3 1/2 inches of hair taken off the back of his neck to adhere to team policy.
Jarrod Saltalamacchia, who joins the Marlins after being with the Red Sox, is fine to keep his beard. His hair length also is fine.
"Salty is good," Redmond said.
"I've always kind of had one, so it's good for me," Saltalamacchia said. "The game is changing. You're starting to have to adapt to some of the younger guys coming up, and things are changing. ... I'm not against rules. Just don't take advantage of them."
Saltalamacchia noted that owner Jeffrey Loria has agreed to bend the policy a bit, and now it is up to the players to not go too far.
"This has been a rule for a long time, I understand," Saltalamacchia said. "He's allowed us to do it. We need to take advantage of it, and not go too far."
The Marlins have one of the younger teams in the league, which prompted Redmond to say: "We've only got a handful of guys who can grow a beard."