BOSTON -- The beards have found their way into the Red Sox front office -- even in the marketing department.
"This is the only time I'll ever get away with this here, working for my executive vice president Frank Huckabone," said Ben Bianchi, pointing to the full beard on his face. "In the whole spirit of the investment, we at least like to look the part."
Bianchi, 25, the son of Mayor Daniel L. and Theresa Bianchi, has worked his way from the Red Sox ticket office to an account executive's position with Fenway Sports Management. He's a 2006 graduate of St. Joseph Central High School and earned his degree in sports management in 2010 from the University of Massachusetts' Isenberg School of Management.
Taking a few minutes off from his marketing duties before the start of Game 6 of the 2013 World Series, Bianchi said the executives have said "take it and run with it," and the razors have been put away.
It is fair to say that Bianchi's beard doesn't rival Mike Napoli's or Jonny Gomes -- which probably would suit his parents.
"She's not a fan. She likes to see her boys clean shaven," Bianchi said with a laugh. "That said, she is behind this. Dad is a little bit more easy-going.
"They're having a lot of fun with this as well."
Ben Bianchi is in his third year with the Red Sox, working with the marketing arm of the ownership group, which is Fenway Sports Group. He works with all of FSG's marketing efforts from the Red Sox to the Liverpool soccer club to the marketing work with the Boston College athletic programs, and even helping market LeBron James.
But right now, it's all about the Red Sox and the possibility of the team winning a third World Series championship in the 21st Century.
It's also about a very, very busy cell phone.
"Any time away from a [phone] charger is a tough one," said Bianchi. "It's been good.
"I joke that I've heard from a number of folks that I haven't heard from in years."
Bianchi said he could be a go-to guy for tickets from friends, family and the like. He said the number of calls could vary, from a few during the dog days of summer to a bunch now.
"It's literally upwards of, I would say, hundreds in the last few days," he said. "A lot of it is like, ‘Hey if you've got tickets, I would be over the moon. More importantly, good luck.' "
Ben Bianchi's tenure in Boston coincided with the collapse in 2011 and the one-year Bobby Valentine era. The Red Sox under general manager Ben Cherington and manager John Farrell not only quashed those memories, but were a Game 6 victory away from claiming a title the Red Sox last won in 2007.
"It's funny because 2011 looked so promising and the in the month of September, everything fell through. Last year was very challenging," he said. "There have been rewards along the way. For a kid from Pittsfield to come to work at Fenway Park every day -- I live right over the Charles River on the Cambridge-Somerville line -- this place is unbelievable.
"This year has been more special and unbelievable."