The Duck in Pinstripes: Charlie Ruegger ’20
The New York Yankees appearance policy, enacted in 1973 by former club owner George Steinbrenner, states “all players, coaches and male executives are forbidden to display any facial hair other than mustaches.” Although Charlie Ruegger ’20 is now clean-shaven, pitching for the Yankees, his former Ducks teammates and coaches fondly remember the seemingly magical powers of his larger-than-life mustache and the confidence it gave to the ball club during his time at Stevens.
Known to be competitive, funny and kind-natured by his teammates, Ruegger completed his three-year career with the Ducks as one of the top pitchers in program history. Finishing with an impressive 11-3 record, he also recorded a 3.25 earned run average, eight saves and 142 strikeouts. Charlie was drafted as a junior in the 2018 Major League Baseball Draft, signing a professional contract with the Yankees, but he also committed to completing his studies at Stevens.
"I want to be able to move right into the business world," he said, already planning for a future beyond his baseball career.
He's well-positioned for that day when it comes. He graduated with a degree in quantitative finance, earning President's List honors along the way.
In the summer of 2019 Ruegger was promoted from the Staten Island Yankees (short season A league) to the Charleston Riverdogs (full-season A league) with the Yankees. Perhaps one day Duck fans will be able to see his talents in Yankee Stadium – maybe even sporting an approved New York Yankees mustache.
Over the years, three additional Stevens Ducks have signed on to play with MLB-affiliated franchises; Robert Robbins ’16 with the Chicago Cubs (2019), Andrew Mathews ’49 with both the New York Giants and Brooklyn Dodgers (1946-1950), and David Garcia ’73 who made it all the way to AAA, one step from the majors, with the Minnesota Twins (1973-1981).