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The minor leagues don’t have the best baseball, but they do have the most colorful history

A new book looks at the weird, the wonderful, the downright unbelievable.

PORTLAND, Maine — Tim Hagerty knows baseball. A lifelong fan who grew up in Massachusetts rooting — need it even be said? — for the Red Sox, he has written two books about the sport and makes a living as the broadcaster for the Triple-A El Paso Chihuahuas.

In 2012, while digging through old newspaper archives for a research project, he came across a story from 1888. At a ballpark in Austin, Texas, a wild bull charged onto the field, snorting and kicking up dust, leaving the fans howling and the players running for shelter. Because of the disruption the bull caused, the game ended up being called early.

“I broadcast and write about baseball for a living, and if I hadn’t heard this story before, I knew most fans hadn’t either," he wrote. 

Inspiration struck. 

“I spent the next decade combing through articles, baseball guides, books, newspapers, the Hall of Fame’s files in Cooperstown, New York, conducting interviews and tracking the latest minor league madness online to compile the most entertaining stories from baseball’s past and present—from the base runner who raced a horse, to the catcher who was struck by lightning, to the pitcher who took the mound barefoot," he wrote. 

The result is “Tales from the Dugout: 1,001 Humorous, Inspirational & Wild Anecdotes from Minor League Baseball.” 

One of those stories is about the Portland Sea Dogs.

What did they do to merit a mention? They paid tribute to “three Maine food traditions in 2022 by playing select games as the Maine Bean Suppahs, the Maine Red Snappers, and the Maine Whoopie Pies.”

We talked with Hagerty about the book and some of the crazy stuff that goes hand in hand with minor league baseball. Watch our interview to learn more.

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