Bronx bristle: Yanks growing mustaches during winning streak

NEW YORK (AP) There's something hairy going on in the New York Yankees clubhouse.

Mustaches in various stages of growth have been sprouting on the upper lips of an increasing number of players during the team's recent run of wins in seven of eight games.

Brett Gardner had the idea in Tampa while New York was sweeping the Rays to help turn around a 3-6 start, and he's been recruiting participants along the way.

''Ever since Tampa, we've just been playing good. I kind of stuck with it and some other guys followed suit,'' Gardner said. ''It's something we talked about just having fun with it.''

As New York took its road trip to Detroit, the roster of players with burgeoning ''push brooms'' - as ''The Simpsons'' character Ned Flanders calls his bushy `stache - has grown to include Jacoby Ellsbury, Mark Teixeira, Dellin Betances, Brian McCann and Esmil Rogers among others.

No beards, of course. The organization has a policy against full facial hair. But from Goose Gossage to Don Mattingly to Jason Giambi, the mustache has made an occasional appearance.

Gardner's mustache is growing in nicely, but Betances, the baby-faced 27-year-old reliever, is having trouble, sporting a few wisps of hair.

''It's very spotty. Mine is the worst one,'' Betances said. ''Until my wife says, `You've got to shave that off,' I'll keep it going.''

The one player Gardner can't recruit so far is Alex Rodriguez. Manager Joe Girardi is undecided.

''He has asked me about it, so we'll see,'' Girardi said. ''I have to answer to someone at home.''

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