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Hot Dog! MLB ballparks to serve almost 22 million wieners in '09

Big League Stew

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If this baseball blogging thing doesn't end up working out for me, I've found my next dream position: Esteemed board member of the National Hot Dog & Sausage Council!

Honestly, I had no idea this red hot position even existed until the NHDSC spokeswiener Tom Super emailed this morning to make sure that each Stewie was aware that the group is projecting that 21,733,389 hot dogs will be downed at MLB ballparks this season.

Since I like any dawg named Super — so long as you hold the ketchup — I thought I'd use great relish to pass along some more details from Super's super press release.

After all, maybe it'll help me land a job inside NHDSC's supersized steamer home office, where I can correct them on the release's most glaring error. A remembrance of the death of U.S. Cellular Field's grilled kosher dog — indisputably not only the best in Chicago, but also the entire country — is nowhere to be found.

Settling for a quarter pound of delicious Vienna Beef at Sox Park works, though. Anyway, read below for a summary of Super's hot dog-related statistics:

• Like any good fan of food trivia, you're probably wondering how long all those casings would be if laid end to end. And like any good press agent, Super has an answer: "Enough to round the bases 30,186 times and stretch to and from Citizens Bank Park in Philadelphia and Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, FL, the two sites of the 2008 World Series."

• With 1.5 million projected dogs, Boston's Fenway Frank is expected to lead the bigs in hot dog sales. The Phillies are second with 1.25 million meat tubes, closely edging out their NLCS opponent Dodgers, who should sell 1.2 million Dodger Dogs.

• Teams that hold special "Dollar Dog Nights" can sell as many as 70K hot dogs in one evening.

• The hot dog isn't king everywhere. Sausages have no problem outpacing wieners in Milwaukee, where 430,000 brats, Italians, Polishes and Chorizos are expected to be sold during Brewers games at Miller Park. (The Mets should rank second in sausage with 405,000 sold.)

• The NHDSC is still steamed over the fact that hot dogs are nowhere to be found in "Take Me Out To The Ballgame" and are grilling the U.S. Copyright Office to make sure everyone's favorite baseball meat is included in the lyrics. Super's boiling argument?

"Clearly, the omission of hot dogs was inadvertent because, as the story goes, the song's author, Jack Norworth, wrote the song in 1908 but didn't attend a baseball game himself until 1940. We are confident that if Mr. Norworth were alive today, he would agree to alter the verse and pay tribute to America 's cultural icon. Behind ‘The Star Spangled Banner' and ‘Happy Birthday to You,' ‘Take Me Out to the Ballgame' is the third most sung song in the United States and we think it should be updated accordingly for the next 100 years."

Viva la hot dog! Now, who's ready for lunch?

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