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Blashpemy! Some Chicago Cubs players don’t like ‘Chicago-Style’ hot dogs (video)

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As far as MLB teams go, in spring, hope springs eternal for all 30 ballclubs. Even the Chicago Cubs. But since the Chicago Cubs are, well, the Chicago Cubs, it’s likely that before long once the season starts — if this season is like most others — the hope of a great season for the North Siders will begin to ebb, dim more and more and ultimately, fade into nonexistence. But hey, next spring is only less than a year away, right?

With the near-certainty that the Cubbies will be struggling their way through another forgettable season in mind, let us turn our attention to something much more important and potentially controversial: How some Chicago Cubs players enjoy their hot dogs. Even worse, how some of them claim to not enjoy eating their dogs “Chicago-Style.” Not good.

Second baseman Darwin Barney, pitcher James Russell,  outfielder Matt Szczur and pitcher Matt Garza were the four players who were asked about their respective hot dog preferences and are featured in the MLB.com video below.

For the uninitiated — and if so, shame on you — a “Chicago-Style” hot dog consists of an all-beef wiener on a poppyseed bun that is topped with a cavalcade of delicious condiments. Those include neon-green relish, tomato slices, yellow mustard, chopped onions, a pickle spear and two pickled sport peppers before it is finished off with some celery salt. Sure, it sounds strange, but the flavor combination is ultimately intoxicating and delectable.

In fact, even though there are several eateries where “Chicago Style” dogs are available here in the Twin Cities, I have gone so far as to hit up the Vienna Beef website and order a pricy “Hot Dog Kit” so I can enjoy those bad boys at home. Yes, I do realize that I have a problem.

Moving on, here’s what the four previously mentioned Cubs players had to say regarding their hot dog preferences:

  • Darwin Barney:  While he says they can be “tough to eat,” he “does enjoy them every once in awhile” but usually sticks with relish, sauerkraut, ketchup and mustard
  • James Russell: “Just ketchup. That’s it.” Although he does admit that he “didn’t know it was kinda frowned upon just to put ketchup on your hot dog.” And yet, he hasn’t changed his hot dog habits.
  • Matt Szczur: “Ketchup, mustard and relish and I’m good.” He said that he tried “Chicago-Style” hot dogs once when he was drafted but is noncommittal, not saying doesn’t say whether or not he liked it.
  • Matt Garza: “Everything but no peppers. But they’re awesome.”

Thankfully Garza came up clutch and flat-out said he liked “Chicago-Style” dogs without any caveats, alternatives or excuses, something that will ingratiate him to Cubs Nation. The other guys? I suppose they have their work cut out for them after such an affront to a Chicago custom.

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