April 11, 2003


My buddy Alan sends along this photo from a visit Thursday night to see the Vero Beach Dodgers play at home against the Palm Beach Cardinals.

One of the great things about minor league baseball is the teams' reliance on goofball stunts to get fans to come out to the park. Al and I have seen some great promotions in our time. In Vero Beach one year, we were fortunate to see the Dodgers play on Halloween weekend. A woman dressed up as a baseball took first place.

Then there was the time we drove at breakneck speed to catch the middle of a St. Lucie Mets doubleheader because the break between the two games was when a mascot kickball game was going to take place. We arrived to find a surreal landscape of a baseball infield filled with, among other things, an IHOP pancake, a Burger King Whopper, a side of fries and a towering loaf of Wonderbread.

Forever burnished in my brain is the image of Pinch-A-Loaf (actual name) rounding third after kicking a tremendous shot to left field. As the loaf passed third, centrifugal force kicked in as the runner struggled to get the top end of the loaf back to 90 degrees. As the speedy bread bag tilted at a 45-degree angle, a high schooler in a panther costume that was about 14 sizes too big did her best to hit the cutoff burger but was unsuccessful in nailing the food group at the plate. Mighty Pinch-a-Loaf had already registered an inside-the-park home run. To this day, he owns the American Mascot League record for on base percentage by a whole grain product.

Anyway, Al sent along a photo from Thursday's excursion, with the following caption:

This guy participated in the Twinkie-eating contest. Was supposed to eat 20. Ate only 6. How sad.

Posted by Jeff at April 11, 2003 09:51 AM | TrackBack