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Somehow, Someway, Rod Beck Was Only 29 Years Old When He Played For The Cubs

We spent a lot of time last night talking mustaches because the Cubs' reliever had a great one. Sometimes the content is that simple. Show me a great mustache and good chance we're on the blog: 

Naturally I got a lot of feedback that Rod Beck's (RIP) mustache is still the #1 mustache coming out of the Cubs' bullpen. Some even said his mustache should get it's own Cooperstown bust complete with its gross number of successful muff dives just like how they show hits and RBI's. Honor the guy appropriately, you know? 

Then one guy just wanted to remind me that Shooter logged 51 saves in 1998 so he sent me a picture of his baseball card. 

I almost died when I saw that image of a hatless Rod Beck. It's the distant stare of a man in search of unfiltered cigarettes and an open bar tab mixed with the realization that he has to go sit in the leftfield bullpen for at least 3 hours. HBO wouldn't even consider that level of creative liberty with Kenny Powers's hairline or appearance. But it's easily overcome by the pageantry of the Party In The Back combined with the lawlessness of the Fu Manchu. 22 years later and that's still my Closer. 

Here's the the thing I didn't know: Rod Beck was 29 years old when that picture was taken. He turned 30 that August. A lot of you reading this are over 30 or on the cusp of hitting it. Maybe some of your brothers or friends have crossed the threshold. I present this blog knowing that 99% of you look better than professional athlete Rod Beck at this milestone. But then my question back is how many of you went out and saved 51 games last year? Exactly. None of you pussies. Not even one save. 

I wish baseball players were still cool like Rod Beck. He played at arguably the best time for closers. A time when organizations would build a pitching staff backwards from the 9th inning. A time when a 91-mph slider was black magic sorcery. Those are the days Rod Beck flourished and I think we're all better men for experiencing it. Even if he collectively duped us on his age by about 15 years. 

RIP Shooter. Everyone misses you.