International Incident Almost Spoils Run at Record
June 29, 2005
On what started innocently enough in sunshine, the Oakland A's hosted the Seattle Mariners in a week night baseball game, but the spotlight was once again on the dollar dog competition. Since 1999, the A's have honored a unique gastronomical tradition - offering fans one dollar hot dogs at every Wednesday home game. This night, 25,177 fans turned out to see if the Lucas "Intern", Matt Codiroli, could top Kevin Uribe's seemingly Ruthian record of 13 5/6 dollar dogs consumed in a single game.
Codiroli, also known as Euro for frequently settling for outside shots during Tuesday and Thursday lunch time hoops games, has become a beacon for such events. In the past year he has eaten a 12x8x½ inch frosted birthday cookie, a leftover tostada, and stuffed a fist sized burrito in his mouth, which he was able to chew and swallow. However, before this night he had never eaten more than seven dollar dogs. Could he step up to the challenge and eat fourteen to better the three year old record?
As with all great records there is some history of controversy. Todj Essian, one time record holder at 13 dogs has never recognized Uribe's feat. He has steadfastly maintained that not only can you not throw up during a game (which disqualified one possible champ), but that you must eat whole dogs. No fractions. No 5/6th's. Finish the dog.
But on this night there were also other controversies -- this time surrounding the "Mouth from the South", one Casey Canter. Canter, who has won his share of individual dollar dog competitions was in the condiment line with 2001 record holder Bryan Washington. Having just purchased twenty dogs between them to help get the competition started they were contemplating how long the relish, onions, and sauerkraut had been sitting out in the sun. After some thought they wisely opted to simply add mustard to their bounty.
However, while doing so, a skinny Japanese national - it may have been the great Kobayashi of Coney Island hot dog eating fame -- grabbed a couple of the wrapped dogs from Collin's pile. Before one could say Mr. Miyagi, Canter was in the young man's grill and although it appeared he could not understand English, he could understand the universal language for "put my F%@^%^ing dogs down." Order was soon restored and all dogs were eventually accounted for.
Meanwhile Codiroli carpooled in with the Bando's - a family of neophytes when it comes to navigating the Coliseum traffic, parking, and concessions - and did not get to his seat until the middle of the fourth inning. Would he be able to mount an effective challenge in five innings? Using unorthodox stratagems - convincing the Franks a Lot concessionaire to sell him 14 dogs (10 is the posted limit) and dunking each bite of each dog in ketchup -- Codiroli quickly began his assault. In a little over an inning he powered through seven dogs. But dollar dog historians had seen this before. Andrew Cho once ate nine dogs in an inning before fading badly and only eating twelve. Would Codiroli finish strong?
On this night everything appeared aligned and as the eighth inning came around and he was just two dogs short of the record old man Campanaris took his sons Matthew and Joshie and Chase Bando in front of upper deck section 308 to attempt to coax a "wave" out of the fans. Eventually they got four sections to stand and cheer and when they returned to their seats Codiroli, apparently having regained the "stomach of the tiger", had tied the great Uribe. 13 5/6ths dogs. One bite and he would achieve immortality.
Turning first to the crowd and perhaps saying a prayer - so as to be able to restrain the gag reflex that surely he had been keeping at bay the last two innings, which would disqualify him -- Codiroli put the last bite in his mouth and slowly chewed and swallowed. Fourteen! A new champ! Not even the great Essian could quibble with this one.
Box Score (age):
1. Matt Codiroli 14 *
2. Bryan Washington 6
3. Matthew Campanaris (7 ½) 5 #
4. Josh Campanaris (5) 4 #
5. Chris Campanaris 4
6. Casey Canter 4
7. Kevin Smart 4 #
8. Chase Bando (7) 3 ½ #
9. Mikie Bando 3 ½
10. Andi Campanaris 2
11. Charlie Bando (5) 1 ½ #
12. Connor Smart (6) 1 #
Total 52 ½
* All time record
# Individual career record