May 23, 2024

People do odd things in the name of good luck. When I was in junior high school, I used to go out squirrel hunting with a guy who wouldn’t set foot in any of our favorite tracts of woods without his “lucky socks,” which evidently had been notably lacking in luck themselves. The foot coverings themselves had faded from red to a pale pink, and the toes and heels were out – but they were his lucky socks. Well, we almost always brought home the prime ingredient for Brunswick Stew when we went out, so I suppose evidence supports his assertion.


So I wasn’t surprised to see a sportsball team from Minnesota, the Minneapolis Twins (which, I understand, is a baseball club) giving credit for a series of wins to a sausage. I guess that’s one lucky sausage.

The Minnesota Twins are no stranger to unique home-run celebrations. Last season, the team introduced a fishing vest and toy fishing pole to the dugout, a nod to the state’s 10,000 lakes.

This year, it’s none other than a midwestern delicacy — the summer sausage — fueling the Twins’ eight-game winning streak.

In Thursday’s matchup against the White Sox, the Twins faced a 2-0 deficit in the bottom of the sixth inning. Then, hitting coach David Popkins brought a Cloverdale Foods tangy summer sausage into the dugout and beckoned his players to tap it before they hit.

The presence of the sausage ignited a flurry of hits, including back-to-back homers from Edouard Julien and Ryan Jeffers in the same inning. After Carlos Santana homered in the eighth, Jeffers tossed the sausage to the first baseman on his return to the dugout and the home-run celebration was born.

That reminds me of an old Army saying: “If it’s stupid but works, it’s not stupid.” I know little or nothing about sportsball, but I can only assume that, up to that point, the team’s luck had been the wurst.


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A series of wins like this will no doubt help the players make ends meat, and it sure seems to be working for them. Before this tradition, the mere suggestion of relying on sausage would have made one think the team was full of bologna. It takes guts to try something like this, but the team listened to some sage advice. Now they are giving rival teams something to ketchup with.

The team’s method of taking their lucky charm along on away games is, I admit, novel. The AP’s article at the top of my piece reports:

The sausage has been traveling with the team in a Ziploc bag shoved into a shoe. When it comes to their upcoming games in Toronto, it’s unclear whether the sausage will make it through customs — though Jeffers is confident they can find a way.

Their post-game celebrations, one feels certain, are veritable sausage parties. And why not? Who doesn’t love sausage? Bacon, granted, is better, but sausage is still good – it’s one thing we take out of the pig and then put the pig back in.


Sadly, there is now coming out of Minnesota a rumor that the team’s lucky sausage was stolen by a seabird. It took a tern for the wurst.

I’ll be here all week, folks. Try the veal. Don’t forget to tip your server.

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