Facial hair can be a wonderful thing – if done correctly.

Done incorrectly, facial hair can be a flashpoint for ridicule, generating joke after barb after insult, until my wife’s voice is sore.

And three guys doing it incorrectly? National League closers Ryan Franklin, Brian Wilson, and John Axford. The only question, aside from wondering whether they own mirrors, is which one is worst? For your consideration:

Ryan Franklin

Clearly Wants to Be: The Devil.

Instead, Looks Like: The untamed she-mane of a 1970s porn queen.

Statement His Facial Hair Makes: “I’m really into the Three Billy Goats Gruff. I want to be the second one.”


Brian Wilson

Clearly Wants to Be: Blackbeard the Pirate.

Instead, Looks Like: Crazy Douche… the Pirate.

Statement His Facial Hair Makes: “If I’m willing to dye my beard, you know there’s nothing I won’t dye. Nothing.”


John Axford

Clearly Wants to Be: Rollie Fingers.

Instead, Looks Like: A small-town florist named Pierre.

Statement His Facial Hair Makes: “Arbitration raises are for mustache wax.”


But the thing that really pushes these guys over the edge, you know, from guy on the street you make fun of to full-on tinted van dweller? They could all look completely normal.

  • http://tragicallyhipstamatic.wordpress.com xolager

    Franklin looks like a tool but Wilson and Axford get huge passes.

    Baseball needs MORE mustaches and beards.

    I think it’s time to start campaigning for Marmol for grow a pencil-thin ‘stache, and for Marshall for start rocking a Kirk Gibson-esque cookie duster.

    • VanSlaw

      Franklin looks like a date rapist in the pic WITHOUT the beard.

  • funkster

    Definitely Franklin’s wannabe Tank Abbott beard.

  • http://www.cubblogging.com Jen

    Damn. I’ve scrolled up and down this page for ten minutes now but I must concur, Franklin’s chin broom gives me the most heebie jeebies.

  • Dan0mite

    I have to go with Wilson’s “Just for Men” beard. It is ridiculous.

  • Butcher

    If Axford’s ‘stache was thicker, it would be awesome, but I don’t think he has the follicle density to pull off that look. See Daniel Day Lewis in Gangs of New York if you want to see it done properly.

    Brian Wilson’s beard is like the 10th douchiest thing about him in a LONG list of douchey things. I’m also unconvinced that his beard isn’t glued on. If he didn’t dye it black, I think it would actually look pretty awesome (but he’d still be a douche).

    I don’t even understand what Franklin is trying to accomplish. There’s no historical precedence for what he’s growing, is there? What do you even call that thing?

    • wax_eagle

      Chin Marmot is the proper term I believe.

      • Ace

        Spot on.

    • Bric

      Brian Wilson’s facial hair makes one clear and powerful statement for this time of year:

      • Ace

        I don’t think anyone anywhere wants to be one of Brian Wilson’s people.

    • VanSlaw

      See Daniel Day Lewis in Gangs of New York if you want to see it done properly.

      Or your avatar.

      • Bric

        See what done right, the ten commandments? – It’ll be on next week, check it out.

  • jh

    Axford definitely wins this (if you can call it that).

    Wilson probably has at least one person with him at all times just to tell him how great his beard looks. Franklin looks like he belongs in a terrible metal band.

    Axford’s is riteous, though I would still like to see him get punched in the face.

  • CubsFanatic

    Axford definitely. At least the other two have facial hair of todays world instead of Snidely Whiplash wannabe styles.

    • Bric

      Ageed. He needs a text balloon over his head saying
      “Mmwwwhhhaaaa,haaaa,hhhaaa. I am NOT a pediaphile….”

  • Ol’CharlieBrown

    Franklin’s is by far the worst in my opinion. I can’t stand it. It has nothing good to offer. Its not unique. Its not clever. Its not old school. Its just flat out ugly. Tank Abbott’s beard puts whatever it is that Franklin is trying to attempt to shame. At least Wilson’s is well constructed, to the point where it almost looks fake. Axford has that old school look which I would never want for myself, but I gotta give some credit for having the guts to try and sport that. Ace, you are spot on though. He does look like a small-town florist named Pierre.

  • Odd

    Franklin looks like a douche. I think Wilson and Axford’s look awesome.

  • VanSlaw

    I demand residuals for inspiring this topic. Give me ten percent of Bleacher Nation stock, please.

    • Ace

      Stock you say? Okey dokey. Here you go. 10 percent of the existing stock. It’s yours.

      *(although this is obviously a joke and no such stock exists, in light of that crazy ass Facebook suit where that dude claims he owns half of Facebook because of some bs’ing emails, I must state affirmatively: I give you nothing. No stock. No sandwiches. No respect)

      • VanSlaw

        You shall hear from my attorneys, Veryzer, Straw, DK, and Associates. You have been warned.

  • http://None Blinda

    Jeff Samardzija

    Clearly wants to be: Zorro
    Looks like: The 25th man on the roster
    Quotes: “I should’ve stuck with football”

    • Ace


  • jstraw

    Wilson’s beard is growing out of the douchiest face and is dyed douchebag black. It’s the douchiest douchebag baseball beard in the history of douchebags in baseball with beards.

    • wax_eagle

      certainly illustrates the versatility of the word.

  • pfk

    Franklin wins for the worst. He’s a Cardinal – nothing more needs to be said.

  • Cardfan

    Can we, technically, still call Franklin a “closer”. POS, goofy car-wash-brush looking idiot.

    • Ace

      He is a closer much in the way that Kyra Sedgwick is a closer.

  • Tobe

    Have you guys seen Doumit’s beard from the Pirates? Holy douche bag batman. It’s in between red, yellow and black. Looks like he is wearing a face full of honey bees.

    • Ace


  • Pingback: My Team for the Free $150 Fantasy Baseball Tourney | Bleacher Nation | Chicago Cubs News, Rumors, and Commentary()

  • Pingback: The Brewers Land a Maybe Closer and Other Bullets | Bleacher Nation | Chicago Cubs News, Rumors, and Commentary()