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Fans elect Hogan with hair vs. bald bobblehead in Baysox giveaway

Erin Cox
Contact ReporterThe Baltimore Sun
The Baltimore Sun got an exclusive first look at how the Bowie Baysox rendered Gov. Hogan as a bobblehead.

It's Election Day Sunday at a minor league baseball stadium in Bowie, where fan preference for the governor's hairstyle was up for a low-stakes contest to benefit a cancer charity.

In what's believed to be a first for Maryland's highest ranking office, Gov. Larry Hogan agreed to have two bobbleheads crafted in his image as a marketing gimmick. One sports the gray wave of hair he wore when voters catapulted him to office in 2014. The other has a bald dome like the one he had last summer while battling cancer.

Bowie Baysox fans "voted" for which style they prefer by lining up for a hair or no-hair version of the popular Republican governor.

Before 2 p.m., the "Hair Bobblehead" was declared the winner in a Baysox tweet.

Hogan was on hand to sign autographs as fans picked up their preferred giveaways amid the "Bobblection."

Hogan addressed the crowd before the game while standing on the field in a No. 1 jersey.

“Before I leave, I want to get a chance to meet every one of you personally,” Hogan told the fans from the PA system inside the ballpark. "It means a lot to me that you all came out. I’ve had so much tremendous support."

Hogan also introduced Andrew Oberle, a young man who threw out the first pitch Sunday. Hogan referred to him as “the strongest young man I’ve ever met.”

“He gave me great advice as I was going through cancer [treatments],” Hogan said.

Hogan stood at Oberle's side as he threw out the first pitch.

The hair v. bald question is one the governor fields regularly in public (and with amusement) as well-wishers inquire after his health. While publicly documenting the grueling treatment against non-Hodgkin's lymphoma last year, Hogan embraced how chemotherapy robbed him of a full head of hair. He remained in his job but dedicated almost all his limited public appearances to cancer awareness events. He has been in remission since November.

The clench-fisted, power suit-wearing bobblehead version of the governor is a svelte rendering of Hogan, who often jokes about how he's the only chemo patient to gain weight.

Both versions of bobblehead Hogan also come with a heavy does of political propaganda on the box, describing the governor moves to address state fiscal issues in glowing terms.

The Baysox played a 2:05 p.m. game against the Erie Seawolves and wore lime green jerseys to signify lymphoma cancer awareness. All the proceeds from the bobbleheads will go to an unspecified cancer charity, Baysox officials said.

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