Baseball slang can make you hungry, especially if there are rhubarbs (arguments), taters (home runs), or cans of corn (easy-to-catch fly balls). In honor of baseball’s upcoming All-Star Game, here are fascinating facts about great players and grub:
- Pitcher Satchel Paige’s dining advice included: “Avoid fried meats, which angry up the blood.” He also advised that “if your stomach disputes you, lie down and pacify it with cool thoughts.”
- At a Boston hotel, Ted Williams ordered breakfast from room service and used a stopwatch to track delivery time.
- Joe DiMaggio hustled after fly balls –- and just as aggressively fielded the check while dining with New York Yankees teammates. If they tried to pay their share, DiMaggio slapped their hands away. “When you eat with the Dago,” he said, “the Dago pays.”
- A candy bar was named for Ken Griffey Jr., but he couldn’t eat it. He’s allergic to chocolate.
- During an era when it was common for players to share a bed while on the road, pitcher Rube Waddell’s roommate was Ossie Schreckengost. And Schreckengost wouldn’t sign his contract with the team unless Waddell’s contract forbade the pitcher from eating animal crackers in bed.
- On hot summer days, pitcher Dizzy Dean tried to fry eggs on the dugout roof.
- Wade Boggs believed that eating chicken before a game improved his performance. He and his wife Debbie wrote a chicken cookbook called Fowl Tips.
- During a road trip in San Diego, Roberto Clemente left a restaurant with fried chicken. A car pulled up, and an armed man ordered him into the vehicle. The robbers made him strip to his underwear, and took his wallet and All-Star Game ring. After Clemente told them who he was, they returned his wallet, ring and clothes, then let him out of the car and drove off. But the car returned moments later, and Clemente feared they would kill him after all. Instead, they handed him his box of fried chicken.