Miami Marlins superfan Andres Salgado knew the risks when he made his promise in May 2014.
When Jose Fernandez went down with an arm injury nearly 14 months ago, Salgado vowed not to shave his beard of get a haircut until the pitcher returned from the ensuing Tommy John surgery. So, on the eve of Fernandez’s return Thursday against the San Francisco Giants, the now-shaggy Salgado did just as he promised…he bid adieu to his lengthy locks.
And the 2013 National League Rookie of the Year was there to lend a helping hand.
“It’s crazy. I mean, I wouldn’t do it,” Fernandez said. “I probably would try but have no result. It is nice and I think it’s good. It’s always good to feel the love from the fans.”
Joining Fernandez in sheering the man dubbed “The Jose Guy”…Marlins team barber Hugo “Juice” Tandron and, naturally, “Marlins Man” himself, good friend of The Hall, Laurence Leavy.
But the best of the whole thing is this. Not only do Salgado’s wife and family get their once formerly fresh-faced fan of the fish back…but all the proceeds raised during an accompanying charity auction went to the Make-A-Wish Foundation.
“This is by far nothing what I imagined it would be,” Salgado said. “I thought it would be a nice little haircut from Juice in his barbershop with a couple of people but never this mass media attention.”