Chewin’ Baseball; The Move to Ban Smokeless Tobacco

by Dan Langille | Posted on Thursday, March 3rd, 2016
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For as long as I can remember there has been chewing tobacco in major league baseball. Probably because it has been only until recently that city’s are taking a stand against the product. This is something that I have done in my few years of playing the sport; as well as what I do when watching live baseball.

There are 3 city’s that has banned smoke-less tobacco in their respective parks; San Francisco, Los Angeles, and Boston. This has come from each individual city and not the league. There reasoning for doing such is bad influence on children. Which I can absolutely see, however, it is not like they are having a dart standing on first base?  No organization is allowed to advertise any tobacco products, so aren’t they doing enough?

Here is a tweet that came from Adam Rubin, a reporter with ESPN on how New York City is considering following suit with the smokeless tobacco ban.


In a recent article posted by the Globe and Mail, written by Robert Macleod and Jeff Gray, it details how a Councillor for the city, Joe Mihevc is spearheading a proposal to the city to band chewing tobacco. This would be in effect for all parks, baseball fields and hockey arena’s. Mihevc is the chairman for the city’s board of health, and he has the backing of the Canadian Cancer Society and various anti-tobacco groups.

This was announced via press conference on February 29th with Stephen Brooks in attendance. Brooks is the vice-president of business operations for the Toronto Blue Jays. Brooks stated in the press conference;

While certainly, I’m sure there will be pushback from players, this is very much in the spirit of what Major League Baseball has been advocating.

Brooks went on by saying he would not acknowledge which players would give the push back on the Blue Jays.

Is this where MLB is heading now? There is a definite cause for concern over the use of chewing tobacco in baseball. However, with the city’s that are getting on board with this, seemingly one after another, this could be something that is discussed in the next players collective agreement, if the league would like to go to a full ban of chewing tobacco.

Personally, I do not have a problem with the ban. I will still most likely attend Blue Jays games and still enjoy my chewing tobacco. But there is a line that must be drawn; for me when I am at the games I am not spitting it at anyone, in anyone’s direction or spitting it in general. I sit there with my empty beer cup and when finished I get up and walk to a garbage can.

Maybe we should all just hide it a little bit better?

Here is a photo that just came out today of a Ty Cobb baseball card that was found, and obviously I had to use it for this articleTy Cobb Baseball Card

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Dan Langille
About the Author

Dan is a baseball nut, just trying to find the peanuts. Partial to the Blue Jays. Insurance adjuster by day and baseball writer by night. You can call me Night Writer. Find me on Twitter @allthingslang.

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