By Jason Upton // Bells Beat Writer


After a long, gritty baseball game, every player has their own way of loosening up. Some go home for a nap, some are eager to catch up on their favorite TV show, others might want to get a bite to eat; but Bells center fielder Daniel Gernon has a different routine: he cuts his team’s hair.

It all started right around the peak of the early COVID shut-downs, according to Gernon, when people were forced to find new hobbies to fill their excess time. 

“Some people started doing different things outside, some found different parts of them that they maybe didn’t know about themselves,” Gernon explained. “I was just looking for passions that I could build off of, knowing that I couldn’t get in the weight room, I couldn’t go play baseball anywhere.”

Gernon saw all the viral haircut fails that came out of that early period of COVID, but vowed to take his practice more seriously. He started out with friends and family, then moved on to teammates for the first time while at Lower Columbia College, acknowledging the trust factor that goes into cutting someone else’s precious mane.

“I don’t really think I’ve ever messed somebody up, like you saw the quarantine cuts, everybody trying to cut their own hair since barber shops were all closed,” Gernon said. “I know I’m not trying to get in the shop with some guy who’s got no kind of resume. Ever since I started cutting hair, I’ve been really picky about that kind of thing, I can see little fine-point details.”

So far, Gernon has put Willis Cresswell, Nate Mendoza, Ryan Beitel and assistant coach Haydan Hastings in the barber’s seat, to name a few. Most of the styles he sculpts for the team are what he describes as “baseball haircuts.”

“A lot of mullets, a lot of mohawks, you’ll see all kinds. There’s guys that will like their military cuts, there’s guys that just like to slap three on the side and take a little bit off the top too,” Gernon said.

“He likes to call it business opportunities when he gets someone asking about it, so he takes advantage of it, gets a good thing going,” Bells catcher Jacob Schroeder added.

Schroeder, who’s teammates with Gernon at South Carolina Upstate, wasn’t introduced to Gernon’s passion for haircuts until he stumbled across it one day at the clubhouse.

“Everyone’s  just chilling, hanging out, and I step outside on the phone to talk with family. I look around the other side of the clubhouse and I see a kid sitting in a chair,” Schroeder recalled. “I can’t see Gernon yet so I’m like ‘What’s going on over there?’ I take a peek over, and Gernon’s getting his hair wet and getting the clippers going, so that’s when I first realized what was going on.”

Gernon clips away in the clubhouse usually right before or following a Bells game, even with his daily commute to and from Canada. He’s living at home with his family in the Great White North this summer, so he crosses the border twice each day to make it down to Bellingham, estimating a 30-35 minute trip each way. 

Bells pitcher, and childhood friend of Gernon, Ryan Beitel had a different setting for his trim. The Bells were on the road, and Beitel had seen the work Gernon had done on his other “clients” and liked what he saw. 

“We did it in the hotel bathroom in Wenatchee, so it was kind of interesting, but we made it work,” Beitel said. “You stay a little long, but it’s worth it.”

Despite his love for giving a tight cut, Gernon’s priorities remain on his game-day performance. 

“I feel like if I had more time I might expand clientele and everything, but I try to not get too ahead of myself with that, because I’m still trying to focus on my goals on the field,” Gernon said.

Gernon’s cuts, or DG’s Cuts as the team calls it, has become a very popular topic in the clubhouse. Gernon said the coaching staff even put up a card in the team showers that reads “Danny’s Cuts: Look like a champion, play like a champion.” Rumor has it, the team is lobbying for T-shirts to promote DG’s Cuts. 

For a summer-ball team made up of college players from around the country, getting to know one another can be a long process. What Gernon’s business does is speed this up. 

“It kind of breaks the ice, gives people something to talk about. Someone gets a haircut, it’s like ‘Oh, did DG get you?’” Schroeder said. “Good clubhouse guy, that’s for sure.”

“It’s definitely a team bonding thing,” Gernon said. “It’s brought me a lot closer to the people around me, in terms of friends. Barber shop conversations always hit a little different.”