After a spirited series of phone calls, emails, and at least one in-person visit to the league office, former Minnesota Twins great Kent Hrbek announced Thursday that delicious, overstuffed hoagies are not on Major League Baseball’s banned substances list.
“This is a victory for the Twins and America,” said the longtime first baseman. “I understand that we need to get illegal substances under control, but not at the expense of hoagies.”
MLB’s plan to crack down on the items pitchers use to exert a better grip on the baseball has roiled the entire league. For retired players like Hrbek, it’s been a mixed bag.
“I’ve never even heard of Spider Tack, go ahead and get rid of it. But I saw that they were coming after sunscreen. Heck, if they’re coming after suntan lotion, they might be coming after sandwiches that are laden with mayonnaise, oil, assorted mustards, you name it. I’ll be damned if that’s going to happen to the game I love.”
Sources in the league office tell Twins Daily that while it was apparent that Hrbek was the only one concerned about this, he was persistent.
“The avalanche of emails from his Hotmail address was substantial,” said one source with knowledge of the situation. “They weren’t threatening in any way, just very concerned about the visual and textural similarities of Coppertone and Hellmann’s Mayo. We honestly couldn’t tell if it was a bit, but then he followed up with a question about Miracle Whip and tuna salad.”
“Miracle Whip is a garbage condiment,” said Hrbek. “But I’ll defend the right of every major league clubhouse to have it on hand for hoagies, sandwiches, grinders, and subs. We have to have common sense about what’s legal and what isn’t.”
A spokesman for Major League Baseball said that the pre and post-game meal options in the clubhouses will remain unaffected by the substance ban. Hrbek was relieved.
“I’m just a kid from the suburbs but I tell you what, you ever have one of those pita sandwiches? With the spicy lamb and hot yogurt? Brother, I’m not a fan of yogurt but that is a phenomenal sandwich right there.”
Image license here. Flickr/JeffreyW