Tagged: Babe Ruth

Wiener Love

Ahh, the hot dog, linked with baseball for what seems like, well, forever. If not forever, then at least 100 years or so, though the actual date of the momentous marriage of American favorites is not exactly known. Hot dogs are also referred to as frankfurters, franks, wieners, or wienies, though I personally can’t use the last two and keep a straight face, due to my son’s use of those terms to mean something else entirely.

According to the National Hot Dog and Sausage Council, the hot dogs consumed at MLB ballparks during the 2008 season would round the bases 41,667 times – enough to stretch from Nationals Park in Washington, D.C. to AT&T Park in San Francisco! That’s a lot of dogs!

Babe Ruth supposedly liked hot dogs – a lot. Legend has it that the Babe gorged himself on 12 to 18 hot dogs before collapsing on a train ride in April 1925. A week later he underwent surgery for an intestinal abscess. This dried-up, partially consumed hot dog on display at the Baseball Reliquary was supposedly part of that binge.

BabeRuthHotDog.jpgWhat I’d like to know is why someone saved this? Eww! And where has it been for the all the intervening years? Somebody’s attic must have really reeked!

In all likelihood, the vast majority of hot dogs consumed at baseball games are purchased at concession stands, or from the vendor if you don’t want to get out of your seat. But why have your hot dog just handed to you, when it can come flying through the air instead!

At Reading Phillies games, the Crazy Hot Dog Vendor will fling your hot dog with all his might. Unfortunately there are occasional delivery “malfunctions”, as seen here:

IMG_3498.jpgI’ve circled the errant hot dog. Presumably some “lucky” fan only got a bun. The Crazy Hot Dog Vendor is actually pretty popular – so much so that he even had his own bobble head given away at a game.


But sometimes the dogs need to travel farther. In Salem, VA, the Avalanche mascot Muggsy will fire them into the stands with this nifty contraption:

IMG_0890.jpgThe vast reaches of a major league stadium require something even more powerful. Something like this howitzer of hot dog delivery systems, employed by the Phillie Phanatic:

hotdog0001.jpgThe main problem tends to be that frequently, bits of hot dog, bun, and wrapper rain down on the fans in the rows in between the launcher and the intended target. Oh well, I guess the old-fashioned way is best after all. So no matter how your hot dog is delivered to you this season, enjoy! And don’t think too much about what’s actually in it.

(sources: Babe Ruth hot dog from http://www.baseballreliquary.org; hot dog statistics from http://www.hot-dog.org; other photos mine)

Quiz Answers

As promised, here are the answers to yesterday’s quiz.

1) Simon and Garfunkel. The line is from the song “Mrs. Robinson”, featured in the movie “The Graduate”.

2) Centerfield, from the song of the same name.

3) Bruce Springsteen, from the song “Glory Days”.

4) Phil “The Scooter” Rizzuto, in the song “Paradise by the Dashboard Light”.

5) Manny Ramirez. The song is called “Moonshot Manny”.

6) “Ain’t No Stoppin’ Us Now”

7) Sister Sledge

8) Bay Sluggas, Inc.

9) Bernie Williams

Extra Innings:

b) Black Train Jack, on the album “No Reward”. I saw this CD and was tempted to buy it simply because I really like that photo, and I was intrigued by their use of it. But I didn’t. So I have no idea what their music even sounds like.


Take Me Out to the Turntable

Yeah, I know, use of the term “turntable” really dates me, but it sounded better than “mp3 player”. When I’m not obsessing about baseball, music is something I hold near and dear. I like listening to all kinds of music – rock, blues, jazz, even a little rap if it’s not a minefield of f-bombs. And there’s even the occasional baseball tie-in.

So I thought it would be fun to create a little quiz, with, appropriately enough, nine questions. Here goes:

1) What musical duo asked the lyrical question, “Where have you gone, Joe DiMaggio?”

2) What position does John Fogerty want to play when he sings, “Put me in coach, I’m ready to play”?

3) What singer “had a friend was a big baseball player, back in high school”?

4) What Hall of Famer calls play-by-play for Meat Loaf as he tries for a “home run”?

5) Joe Pernice asks what slugger to hit a “moonshot” in a song heard during the closing credits of “Fever Pitch”?

6) “The Phillies got the groove” in a lyrically modified version of this song by McFadden and Whitehead. What is the title?

7) The 1979 Pittsburgh Pirates co-opted the song “We Are Family” from what musical group hailing from, ahem, Philadelphia?

8) In addition to playing baseball and predicting the future, Jimmy Rollins has a music production company. What is it called?

9) Which former Yankee recorded a jazz album entitled “The Journey Within”?

Extra Innings (I’ll make this one multiple choice, as it’s a bit obscure):

This famous photo of Babe Ruth, taken by New York Herald Tribune photographer Nat Fein, won a Pulitzer Prize.
1949.jpg It was also used on the cover of an album by what rock group?

a) Black Flag          b) Black Train Jack       c) The Jack Rubies

I’ll post the answers tomorrow.  Until then, hope you have fun with it!

(photo courtesy Nat Fein Estate, found on http://www.hagginmuseum.org/exhibitions/pulitzer/photos.htm)