If you’ve followed this blog from the beginning, you know there are times I’ve tried to put myself in the players’ shoes and attempt some of the things they make look so easy. I do this for three reasons:
1. It gives me insight into what players experience
2. It’s good for people to see that what the players do isn’t that easy, and
3. The players think it’s pretty damn funny
As some of you already know, I’ve been hit by a 92 mph pitch with the help of Jason Kendall, tried to climb the outfield wall with Alex Gordon and shown off my weak throwing arm with Jeff Francoeur.
But nothing has changed my life like getting my hair cut with Eric Hosmer.
If you’re a Royals fan, you already know Hosmer has perfect hair, cut in a semi-“faux hawk”; a hairstyle so popular that thousands of Kansas Citians — mainly kids — now wear “The Hos.”
The Hos is the creation of Hosmer and DeJuan “Picasso” Bonds of the Purple Label Luxury Barber Shop in Overland Park. Bonds’ work is so popular that Royals players got together and created a barber shop for him in a Kauffman Stadium storage room just outside their clubhouse. Bonds not only cuts the Royals players’ hair, players from other teams wait until they get to Kansas City so Bonds can make them look good, too.
That’s how this whole thing started. I’d walk by and see players getting their hair cut and it dawned on me that getting my hair cut by Bonds would make a good video. And it would be an even better video if Hosmer served as my fashion consultant.
So I told Hosmer he was in charge of my haircut … and that was the first of my many mistakes.
Kendall found out what was going on and he wanted Hosmer to have my head shaved (but only half my head so I’d look as dumb as possible). Kendall’s other idea was a reverse Mohawk: shave a strip down the middle of my head.
That being the case, I wanted to make sure Kendall was nowhere near the barber shop when I got my hair cut. I also told Bonds that if he listened to Kendall, it would reflect badly on him; I was going to tell everyone where I got my hair cut and Bonds didn’t want to ruin his excellent reputation by shaving half my head — even if it would make Kendall laugh.
Bonds said he’d do me right. He had me turn around in a circle and then said I had a nice “canvas” — which apparently meant I actually had some hair for him to work with.
Hosmer also had me grow out my beard so Bonds could do something with that. I told Hosmer my beard was pretty scruffy, but he said Bonds could work magic on even the scruffiest beards and I’d come out looking OK.
And I actually did.
Hosmer asked me if I wanted a regular Hos or a “Playoff Hos,” and I said we should go for broke. A Playoff Hos includes a “hard part,” a line shaved into the side of my head where my part would normally be. (Apparently, it makes you more aerodynamic so you can score from third base in the World Series on a ball that never leaves the infield.)
I had planned to put a hat on my head as soon as my haircut was finished, but Hosmer told me I needed to “own it” and walk around with pride and confidence — which meant I needed a totally new personality to go along with my new haircut.
I got my haircut after Miguel Cabrera and before Kelvin Herrera, so Herrera was in the room when Bonds was putting the finishing touches on my new ’do. Bonds asked Herrera what he thought:
“Baby Hos?” Herrera said.
And I said: “Baby Hos? Papa Hos!” So a haircut for people who like to have dinner at Denny’s at 4:30 in the afternoon was born.
After my haircut was finished, Hosmer pronounced my look “solid.” He added: “Lee, you’re dangerous now.”
Mike Moustakas did what he could to boost my ego when he said: “That does not look totally horrible on you.” Of course, before the haircut I said I wanted to look as good as Hosmer, and Moustakas said that would require reconstructive surgery. So “not totally horrible” was a pretty good compliment.