For years, former Red Sox third baseman Wade Boggs’ legacy of drinking dozens of Miller Lites on cross-country flights has raged. Conservative estimates of the Chicken Man’s drinking prowess generally range between 60 and 70 in one sitting.
Meanwhile, former NFL linebacker Lawrence Taylor is now asserting that he got blackout drunk off 41 Coors Lights on the night he was drafted by the New York Giants.
Isn’t it about time these two retired athletes got their names back in the headlines for positive accomplishments on a playing field?
Last year, as part of a hokey minor league promotion, Boggs poured beers for other people at a Lowell Spinners game. But that gig had to have been as unfulfilling as being paid to wear a Tampa Bay Devil Rays hat into the Hall of Fame. A shrewd business decision, yes. But it won’t help the Chicken Man get to sleep at night as easily as two cases of Miller Lites.
Taylor, meanwhile, could use a makeover to his reputation after a depressing appearance on Dancing with the Stars.
The similarities between the two players are alarming: Both are 51 years old. Both played spotlight roles on big-market teams under constant, extreme scrutiny. Both played at high levels while feeding destructive addictions (chicken, sex and beer for Boggs; cocaine, sex and beer for Taylor). Both also tearfully confessed their regrettable vices on national television.
This isn’t so much a suggestion or merely a good idea. This is an outright demand that the Red Sox facilitate and host the event at Fenway Park sometime this summer.
The current Red Sox ownership group has whored out Fenway Park for much less savory events—John Henry’s wedding, Dave Matthews Band, Jimmy Buffet and Phish concerts, to name a few. Two Hall-of-Fame athletes from the 1980s drinking as many beers as they can over several hours is a better expenditure of time and resources than some jam band attempting a clumsy cover of “Sweet Caroline.” And it would undoubtedly generate more money.
Broadcasting rights for the event would sell to a national network for millions. Or, if NESN were so inclined to air the event, advertisement revenue would be astronomical. If he were still employed by the team, Dr. Charles Steinberg wouldn’t say no.
What’s more, a Boggs vs. Taylor drinking contest would wreak much less havoc on the outfield grass in the middle of the summer than a gigantic stage. All the ballclub would really need to do is set up two large tables on which each could pile his empties in pyramid fashion.
The tickets would sell themselves and the team could practically print money (if they haven’t done so already) based on the amount of beer sales to wannabe competitors liquoring themselves up in the stands. The Boston police officers sore over civilian flaggers cutting into their paydays? They can all work crowd control at the event. For once, they would actually earn their $200 per hour keeping the mayhem to a minimum.
See? Everybody wins. (Unless Butch Hobson shows up.)