The Barber of Mudville (wonder if he works out of Dr. Bartolo Colon’s house of cuts…).
Angel Lucas Pena, a wiry man in braids, hustles through the lobby of a Copley Square hotel in Boston to the elevator. He gets off at the 33rd floor and walks to a room where he gives a secret knock.
Tampa Bay Rays outfielder Carl Crawford is waiting, although Pena can’t stay long because he has three more players to see — Rays first baseman Carlos Pena and the Texas Rangers’ Elvis Andrus and Nelson Cruz. When Angel Pena is done, he rushes into a cab, only to be blocked by the Boston Marathon, so he runs several blocks to the condo of Boston Red Sox outfielder Jacoby Ellsbury.
The next morning he waits in a bank parking lot for Red Sox slugger David Ortiz to pick him up. They drive to Fenway Park and set up shop outside the team’s clubhouse since MLB security has barred locker room access to outsiders. Soon Pena heads to Logan International Airport for a flight to Seattle, where Mariners outfielder Milton Bradley is waiting.
You won’t find Pena’s name in a program or media guide. He has no background in baseball and is not a trainer, team executive or agent, but he is trusted by virtually every star in the game. Pena, nicknamed “Monster99,” is the barber of baseball.
“Everybody around the league knows who he is, and everybody loves him,” says Ortiz, who has a barber chair in his garage courtesy of Pena. “Everybody is cool with him because he’s so cool. I’m telling you, he’s got a relationship with everyone.”