Red Sox

Members of the Rays explained why they were eating popcorn in the dugout vs. the Red Sox

"We were winning by five runs, so let me eat my popcorn and enjoy it."

Nelson Cruz celebrates after hitting a home run. Chris O'Meara/AP Photo

When watching a sporting event, it’s not uncommon for a fan to get hungry midway through and go get a snack.

It’s much less common for a player to do so, and even less common for that snack to be popcorn.

But in the seventh inning of the Rays’ 5-0 win over the Red Sox in Game 1 of the American League Division Series on Thursday, the camera panned to several Tampa Bay players chowing down on some popcorn in the dugout.

With the result all but sealed at that point, Nelson Cruz, Manuel Margot, and Randy Arozarena all went to town. Cruz and Arozarena both hit home runs, so it’s understandable they would have worked up an appetite. Arozarena stole home shortly after he was shown eating, so clearly it didn’t throw him off his game.


“They always have popcorn there, but today was the second time I started eating,” Cruz told reporters. “I was hungry. It was like 11 o’clock. We normally start the game a little early. Around that time I already have dinner, so I was hungry. That was why I take that.”

Cruz called it “relaxing” and said he was able to hang out and watch the game as a spectator.

“We were winning by five runs, so let me eat my popcorn and enjoy it,” he said.

Analyst John Smoltz was surprised to see the situation unfold.

“I’m going to be honest,” Smoltz said. “I’ve never seen baseball players eat popcorn during the game.”


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