Bonus: Harry Caray
Will Ferrell's favorite fair-haired Chicago announcer wasn't technically a ballplayer, but, man, did he drink like it was a competition. Highlights include:
- Beers with Bill Murray: On August 8th, 1988 (8/8/88), something capital-I Important happened. Yes, the Cubs played their first night game at Wrigley, but who cares? This was the evening Caray opened up a broadcast by telling Murray, "This Bud's for you", and handing him an already-koozied can of beer on the air. Man, the '80s.
- The streak: Caray kept diaries that became property of his estate when he passed away in 1998. Because Chicago is a place where emotions & feelings go to freeze, though, the notebooks weren't full of his reflections. The Sun-Times reports that the 1972 diary alone documented Caray's bar outings for 288 days in a row. "I'm a convivial guy," the iconic call-man once said. "I like to drink and dance." Totally.
- The early-morning cab: Deadspin's coverage of the above story yielded a trove of Caray tales from commenters, including this one about coming home at 8am...
- The cab that wasn't a cab: ... and this one, about being too soused to realize that the "cab" he'd hailed was actually a parked police car. (The cop drove him to his destination anyway -- that's the sort of Chicagoan Caray was.)
Honorable mention (drugs!)
Because this is a family website -- You and I are family, reader. Aren't we? -- I excluded narcotic-fueled baseball fables. But that's not to say they didn't happen. For additional reading, deep-Google:
- Darryl Strawberry
- Dock Ellis
- Dwight Gooden
- Oil Can Boyd
Enjoy the stories -- I'm a firm believer that they're more enjoyable than the game itself.
Dave Infante is a senior writer for Thrillist food & drink. Want to know how much he cares about baseball? He once traded a ball signed by Joe DiMaggio for a fountain pen. So yeah: not a lot. Follow him on Twitter: @dinfontay.