DENVER -- When Andrew Cashner says he literally buried his beard after shaving it off to conform to the Marlins' ban on facial hair, believe him. Cashner's father worked in the mortuary business and he used to help him dig the graves and mow the cemetery grass.
"It's a sore subject still," Cashner said of having to shave his bushy beard after the Padres traded him to the Marlins. "I don't like it. But what can you do? I hate shaving. I think my beard is a part of me as a person and who I am."
Cashner isn't the only Marlin who doesn't care for the team's facial hair policy, which was restored before the season after the rule was relaxed for a few years. Players have complained about it privately, but have no choice in the matter. A rule is a rule.
Reliever Fernando Rodney was also forced to shave off his beard when he came over to the Marlins in an earlier trade with the Padres. Cashner said he was informed about the rule when owner Jeffrey Loria and president of baseball operations Michael Hill spoke to him by phone after the trade was made with San Diego.
"When I talked to Michael Hill and Jeff Loria, they kind of told me I needed to shave it," Cashner said. "I hate it. But that's the rule here and that's what you've got to do."
Cashner said shaving off a distinctive beard he wore for years wasn't pleasant.
"I shaved it the next day," Cashner said. "It took a while. It's probably one of the saddest days I've ever had. It stinks, but what are you going to do?"
Cashner didn't just wash the stubble down the sink.
"I buried it," he said.
The clean-shaven Cashner will be making his second start for the Marlins tonight when they face the Rockies at Coors Field. The Marlins obtained him as a two-month rental in their bid to reach the postseason. And, from the sounds of it, a rental Cashner will always be unless the Marlins relax their policy on facial hair. Cashner, who will be making his second start for the Marlins tonight, can become a free agent after the season.
"That'll be the nice thing about free agency, kind of choose a place that (allows facial hair)," Cashner said. "It's a big deal to me."
Major League Baseball is taking a look at the Colin Rea trade, which went up in flames when the pitcher suffered a season-ending arm injury in his very first start with the Marlins.
According to ESPN's Buster Olney, the league is looking into whether the Padres failed to disclose an existing injury with Rea before trading him to the Marlins, along with Cashner. Olney's sources told him Rea informed the Marlins he was receiving treatment on the arm before the Padres traded him. After Rea's injury came to full light, the Marlins traded him back to the Padres for minor-league prospect Luis Castillo.
Rea has since undergone Tommy John surgery.