Eric Hinske goes bald (and then goes deep) in Braves’ win

Here's what Eric Hinske looked like when he hit a game-winning home run Thursday night . . .

Here's what Eric Hinske looked like when he homered Thursday ...

I have a deep appreciation for any pro athlete who would so something as drastic as shave their head, largely for two reasons: 1) It can show a certain belief in the unknown forces of nature, as in, “Maybe this will help me hit better”; 2) Every time somebody shaves their head, that’s one more guy with less hair than me.

Eric Hinske, mired in a 1-for-21 slump, shaved his head before Thursday’s game against San Francisco. He said he did it

... and here's what he looked like when he struck out Tuesday.

... and here's what he looked like when he struck out Tuesday.

because of the blazing summer heat, not the slump. But given that he then went out and hit the game-winning home run in the Braves’ 3-2 victory at Turner Field, this could start a trend.

“We’ve got a lot of guys in here who are bald because they don’t have a choice,” said Brooks Conrad, who’s one of them. “Hinske went with our look and it worked good for him. He looked mean before and now he looks twice as mean.”

Conrad, Tim Hudson, Jonny Venters, Terry Pendleton, Brian Snitker and now Hinske — it’s a fairly significant roster of globey heads.

“I think Mac [Brian McCann] needs to do it next,” said pitcher Kris Medlen. “He’s got that spot up there and he’s kind of in denial.”

Maybe Troy Glaus should shave his head. Kenshin Kawakami? Nate McLouth? I guess it’s too late for Mike Hampton.

“I’ve been thinking about it for a month — it’s so hot here,” said Hinske. “I kind of went a little closer than I wanted to.”

First time?

“No, I usually do it every year in the summer. Today we kind of shaved the Mohawk in first to see if it would look cool, and it didn’t look cool. So I took it all down.”

True. Hinske, who celebrated his 33rd birthday Thursday, had Medlen give him the Mohawk. But he kept it only for batting practice and a team meeting.

“Then he shaved it off himself — it was kind of a slap in the face,” Medlen joked.

(Medlen snapped a picture of the Mohawk on his camera phone  but he declined to email it  to me so I could share it with you in the blogosphere.)

Hinske’s said when manager Bobby Cox saw the Mohawk in the team meeting, “he said ‘happy birthday’ to me and ‘nice haircut.’ Then I went back in and shaved it off.”

And really, he said, it was just about the heat: “It’s a whole different animal here. It’s unbelievable how hot it is. You have to drink a lot of water, you have to take care of yourself, you have to sleep. It’s hot here. I don’t know why it’s so hot. It’s just so hot.”

Yes, it’s hot. But cue the mojo …

Hinske started his third straight game at first base for Glaus, although he hadn’t been hitting much better than Glaus. Hinske’s average at the end of May: .329. But he hit .260 in June, .212 in July and began August 0-for-9.

As he stepped to the plate in the sixth inning, he was 0-for-2 on the night and 1-for-21 over eight games. Then he drove a 2-1 change-up from Giants pitcher Tim Lincecum over the right-center field wall, breaking a 2-2 tie.

“If it works, I’m sure others will do it, too,” Pendleton said.

Must be the head.

Last 5 posts (add fries and a drink for a complete meal)

LIVE from Braves (while Kawakami blows Gwinnett budget)

Falcons’ Weatherspoon showing he’s not empty noise

An early look at NFC’s Super Bowl picks: Falcons are No. 2

Hawks dropped the ball on not signing Shaq

♦ Braves trying to keep it going with team of moving parts

Follow me on Twitter @JeffSchultzAJC and Facebook.com/JeffSchultzAJC

101 comments Add your comment

robdawg08

August 5th, 2010
11:17 pm

Glaus would need a full body shave to come out of his slump…

kerryb

August 5th, 2010
11:21 pm

I just saw that replay of that horrible call by Balk-A-Day Bob Davidson down in Florida tonight. Bob Davidson is a complete blind moron. MLB asked the Marlins broadcaster if he thinks Davidson will come out and admit he blew that game winning call. Not that moron with an ago as big as his. He will never admit that he was wrong. Most inept umpire in baseball.

robdawg08

August 5th, 2010
11:22 pm

Why the mistreatment of KK, Jeff ? He has the same e.r.a. as Lowe. He looked solid to me thru about 5 innings in most of his games. The offense just was non-existant in his starts. Cox better watch out for the Samurai sword…

All aboard the Hey-Train

August 5th, 2010
11:28 pm

Marlins won. No ifs, ands, or buts. Bob completely botched that call. On the replay, he wasn’t even lookig at the line. He was staring off towards the press box. He’s not on my good list. For my predictions, I’m putting an * by it. So far, 2*/3.

robdawg08

August 5th, 2010
11:34 pm

Wouldn’t it be great if KK,McLouth,and Glaus all went to Gwinnett and got into grooves and returned to help in the playoffs (assuming Braves get there) ? I don’t think any of us hate these 3 players. We just think if you’ve got another player that can contribute more or better then give that player a shot. Like using Hinske for Glaus or Medlen for KK which happened. Can Freeman hitch a ride to Atlanta with Minor ???

justin

August 5th, 2010
11:35 pm

omfg. I saw the replay of that ball hit by the marlins and thought it was a walk-off. Turn on the tv a little later and see the phillies won. I mean there’s only a couple ways the ump missed that one, one being he was a philly fan. Two being he’s blind. Three being he was doped up. Or four, all of the above. I’m leaning towards the last in this case.

[...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Anastacia Maldonado, Jeff Schultz. Jeff Schultz said: Hinske goes bald — and then he goes deep … http://bit.ly/bbEM3c [...]

Tmac

August 5th, 2010
11:38 pm

Even mired in a 1 for 21 slump. Hinske is still a better option then Glaus for the simple reason that he’s healthy. Get Glauses legs back under him and he’ll help us down the stretch.

robdawg08

August 5th, 2010
11:41 pm

Maybe Chipper is finally getting hot ! When Prado comes back and if J-Hey can keep swinging a hot bat then the offense should be fine. The 1 thru 4 hitters have to produce. They get the most at-bats and chances.

will

August 5th, 2010
11:46 pm

haha, what a fun read. good article jeff!

Tmac

August 5th, 2010
11:53 pm

I agree robdawg. The guys we have can do the job. 1-4 is solid be it Infante or Prado. Chippers heating up and McCann is driving in runs. Better hang on. The next seven week are going are going to be a wild ride.

All aboard the Hey-Train

August 5th, 2010
11:55 pm

Wags was only #9. Final score on predictions: 2.5*/3

*Bob Davidson sucks.

Chip Shot

August 5th, 2010
11:55 pm

sooooo…….Freeman just cranked another one out of the yard tonight. also with 3 RBI his line is .296 AVG 15 HR 66 RBI .361 OBP. HOW DUMB DO YOU HAVE TO BE TO OVERLOOK THIS? he’d be up in the bigs for any team in the league right now EXCEPT THE BRAVES. SERIOUSLY HOW DUMB DO YOU HAVE TO BE? its not rocket science Wren.

Keith

August 5th, 2010
11:58 pm

Wow! After we talk about their futility of RISP production, they get all power hungry for us!! LOL

Huge win tonight vs the CY Young pitcher. I didn’t get to see/listen to tonight’s game (one of the rare few), but it sounds like JJ wasn’t his sharpest but enough to make pitches when he needed to.

I said that the Giants have come in hot….the Rays came in hot once upon the time…and the Reds back in May…hot teams seem to cool down in Turner. :)

Hope it continues. Dang Phillies tied in the 9th and won it in the 10th. Going to be a battle…

puff

August 6th, 2010
12:00 am

shave HIS head not shave THEIR head

Chip Shot

August 6th, 2010
12:00 am

SERIOUSLY HOW DUMB DO YOU HAVE TO BE???

Tmac

August 6th, 2010
12:05 am

Be patient Chip Shot. It will happen soon. Need to find out first if Glaus can get healthy enough to help us. I’d much rather have a veteran during a playoff run. That being said, if in a couple of weeks Glaus has not gotten healthier and more productive. I think you’ll see Freeman before September call ups.

Chip Shot

August 6th, 2010
12:12 am

SEE ABOUT GLAUS? ARE YOU KIDDING ME? DID YOU SEE HIM USING HIS BAT AS A WALKING STICK LAST NIGHT IN ORDER TO GET TO FIRST BASE AFTER THE WALK?

Tmac

August 6th, 2010
12:21 am

You know Bobby likes veteran leadership and post season experience. Glaus was a World Series MVP. I’m telling you if Glaus is healthy he can be the man again. If not, he’s a liability and he’ll be sitting on the pine. Bobby is not going to throw away his last chance for a title for blind loyalties. Again, just be patient.

Herschel Talker

August 6th, 2010
12:27 am

kerryb @ 11:21:

Davidson already came out and is sticking to his guns. What a joke.

http://scores.espn.go.com/mlb/recap?gameId=300805128

HT

peter nincompoop

August 6th, 2010
12:34 am

Hinske looks like a space alien with that haircut. Man what pale head. Whatever works though.

kgb

August 6th, 2010
12:39 am

That Marlins/Phillies game was a joke. Clearly a fair ball – no doubt. Marlins should have won. But the funniest part is to watch the video of the Marlins broadcasters – they went berserk when the replay was shown of the ball bouncing fair before the third base bag then landing fair again past the bag. (my reation too – how in the h*ll can the ump miss that?) Then I watched the video of the Phillies broadcasters. They’re unbelievable idiots! They watched the same replay but the announcers comment was that the ball hit fair before the bag but went outside the bag somehow, defying all know laws of physics, then curved back in and hit fair. Taking a “homer” broadcast to new extremes.

This sucks when the Phillies get these kind of calls. Gotta make you wonder.

kgb

August 6th, 2010
12:47 am

Here’s the video link. The first half of the video is the Marlins announcers – the second half is the Phillies – quite a contrast.

http://mlb.mlb.com/video/play.jsp?content_id=10660809

SteveO

August 6th, 2010
2:21 am

Jeff, you desperately need to shave your head also. The comb over look and the long on the sides and bald on top look just doesn’t cut it these days. If you are not going to wear a toupee, why fight it? Just shave it all off.

JASon

August 6th, 2010
2:42 am

You never see a horrible, game-changing call go against the Phillies. Or the yankees. Remember the ALDS last year with the fair ball called foul? These calls are not even close. Its not a conspiracy theory, its the MLB working blatantly to support the fanbases that support it.

MIKE

August 6th, 2010
3:09 am

Stop complaining about the Phils call Braves fans. The Phillies have had more bad luck than any team in the N.L….so what they finally get some good luck? That’s the way baseball works.

GovClintonTyree

August 6th, 2010
6:59 am

Wait a minute…some of the details on this Hinske haircut aren’t working for me. Medlen shaved it into a Mohawk? Did he do that lefthanded, or use the right arm, with the newly torn UCL?

Sloan

August 6th, 2010
7:00 am

MIKE- Injuries are bad luck. Calls like Davidson’s are ineptitude.

CHIP SHOT- How dumb do you have to be/? DUMB ENOUGH TO KEEP USING ALL CAPS

Gen Neyland

August 6th, 2010
7:55 am

GovClintonTyree : A little known fact is that all good barbers have slight tears of their UCL’s. Really great barbers have had Tommy Johns surgery.

Toni

August 6th, 2010
8:06 am

With or without hair – the man is HOT! I’ve seen the Big E with a mohawk and it looked good – but I can see Bobby not taking a fancy to it…. but whatever – Eric Hinske is awesome and needs to be signed now for next season or beyond like Wren did Rossy!!!

Big D

August 6th, 2010
8:09 am

Jeff,

Do you have the long hair and pull over? Jim Traficant style? I can’t see the top of your head in your blog photo. Use some of the spray on hair by Ron Popeal (sp?).

Furman Bitcher

August 6th, 2010
8:12 am

Easy folks, Glaus and all his incentives will be gone in 2 weeks. Its about da benjamins baby.

GovClintonTyree

August 6th, 2010
8:31 am

Toni: He’s kind of chubby and mean looking. So I’m not buying that. But I am buying that they should sign him for a couple more years.

TommyJack

August 6th, 2010
8:46 am

Shaving ones head, especially for white boys, looks stupid. Sort of like tats. Redickluss.

Guccione

August 6th, 2010
9:05 am

Geez, nice title. “Goes bald, then goes deep” ??? I thought I logged into my own Penthouse site.

Sam

August 6th, 2010
9:07 am

Gen Neyland

August 6th, 2010
9:15 am

A few nights back, Hinske did something Glaus (bless his knees) couldn’t do. Chased down a foul ball in foul territory beyond 1st base, snagged it for an out. Glaus still has a decent glove, can zero back in ala Gibson in the clutch, but the knees, man. The knees…

epic_quibble

August 6th, 2010
9:22 am

@CHIP SHOT-

Simmer down, Beavis.

Idot

August 6th, 2010
9:43 am

Isn’t there a big difference between AAA pitching, and MLB pitching?

JRW7

August 6th, 2010
9:45 am

This call by umpire BD is terrible. MLB needs to do something about this! The call blew the game!

heartofdarkness

August 6th, 2010
9:57 am

You would hope the Braves gave the Mohawk a full test before deciding to scrap it. Like sending Hinske into the opposing clubhouse. Talk about a concentration killer.

Chip Shot

August 6th, 2010
10:07 am

seriously how dumb do you have to be?

the real Old Gold

August 6th, 2010
10:18 am

“Eric Hinske goes bald (and then goes deep)”

^That’s what SHE said.

bruce

August 6th, 2010
10:20 am

Jeff,
Very funny, seriously. thank you… glad medlen is doing well enough to barber… so I guess Medlen barbered left handed?

Phillies Phan

August 6th, 2010
10:30 am

Phillies will be in first place by the end of the weekend.Braves had a good run and made a valiant effort in Cox’s last season – they should be commended for that. But let’s be real here – they are a JV team in comparison to the Phils.

BuckheadBrave

August 6th, 2010
10:39 am

Phillies Phan,

There is not any kind of logic to back that up given how the Braves play at home. Why don’t you go was the grease stain from your cheese steak out of your acid wash jeans, get in your Camaro, put in your Poison CD, and drive on back up north, thanks.

Phillies Phan

August 6th, 2010
10:46 am

I’m sorry – I can’t hear you. I have back to back to back NL East championships, back to back NL championships, and a World Series championship in my ear.

Jimmy James

August 6th, 2010
10:50 am

Shaved head leads to game winning performance- is this like a reverse Samson thing? Maybe Tim Lincecum should take note.

BuckheadBrave

August 6th, 2010
10:51 am

I’m shaving my head in hopes it helps me avoid traffic in route to the game tonight.

Dirty Dawg

August 6th, 2010
10:55 am

We]re supposed to believe that that ball Gabby Sanchez his last night ‘bounced on the chalk between the bag and home…then bounced on the chalk on the other side of the base and was still foul? In essence, the ball curved around the bag while bouncing? This is the kind of blind arrogance that make ballplayers, managers and fans hate certain umps.