The Chicago Cubs are the hottest team in the National League and one of the most impressive stories in baseball this season, and a big part of their success has been the managerial prowess of Joe Maddon.
With the team’s success and potential first playoff berth in seven years on the line, the manager has decided that he is going to take a page from the playbook of some of the city’s most famous coaches and has grown a beard as a result.
Here is more from Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times:
“Shortly into the season, Maddon said someone told him that all coaches and managers who won championships in Chicago, at least somewhat recently, had mustaches – Mike Ditka with the Bears, Phil Jackson with the Bulls, Ozzie Guillen with the White Sox, and Joel Quenneville with the Blackhawks (over the Lightning).
“So since facial hair is the key, I thought I would take it to the next level,” Maddon said. “I’m trying. I’ve always been challenged. But I’m not giving up on it.”
While those coaches were all seemingly empowered by their facial hair (Jackson had a mustache before going with a full beard later in his tenure with the Bulls), there is one thing that Maddon may want to keep in mind: Frank Chance, the only manager in Cubs history to win a World Series title, was clean shaven.