The 2016 season is upon us. History has already been made. If you have not been following baseball this year, you are missing out. How hot has the action been? I still do not know who won the NCAA March Madness tournament this year. Been too busy catching the action on the diamond.
In fact, I have missed little. Despite the still shabby shape of the economy and the hot dog explorer’s fund, I sprung for a year’s subscription of MLBTV. That’s Major League Baseball Television for the uninitiated. As long as I have an internet connection I can catch nearly every MLB game televised, with the exception of the confusing and inexplicable MLB local market blackout restrictions. That means, here in Santa Fe, New Mexico, I cannot get any of the Arizona Diamondbacks or Colorado Rockies home games; despite living more than 300 miles from either city. Other than that it’s really cool. I can watch up to four games at once. It typically runs about $110 a year, but veterans get a 35% discount, which made it affordable for bums like me.
Which leaves me with what to do this summer. In 2014 I drove 19,000 miles to all 30 MLB ballparks, and slogged 22,000 miles last summer for the same. Despite having a carbon footprint the size of Sasquatch, it’s a little hard to finance three years in a row. So I decided to tour every MLB park again this year the same way Tom Brady participated in the Super Bowl….from the couch. That’s right, stay tuned for the 2016 hot dog explorer’s virtual MLB hot dog tour.
This summer, I will watch a game a televised game from each of the 30 MLB ballparks in the air conditioned comfort of my living room. But here is the exciting part: I will personally design a hot dog for each of those ballparks that you can recreate at home. That’s right, a specialty dog for each baseball team. I’ll try to design a dog that somehow symbolizes the team, a player from the team, or the city in which the team plays.
There will be a few common themes in each dog:
1. I will try to make it with ingredients you can get from a local Wal-Mart store. Wal-Marts are everywhere and allows fans to make it at home without any super special ingredients.
2. I will try to pair it with a local beer, one that symbolizes the team or city. A lot of larger liquor stores carry out of market beers, maybe you can find it at your local beer mart.
3. Unless the dog calls for a specialty frank, I will use Hebrew National franks. Why? Mainly because they are the best tasting, and they are available nationally.
Got a suggestion for your home team? Let’s hear it. I’ll try to recreate it and feature it in my blog and give you credit. Fire up the grill and play ball!