Chewing tobacco is as much a tradition in baseball as digging into the batter's box or scratching your crotch. But at least one longtime chewer has kicked the habit thanks to hypnosis.
San Francisco Giants manager Bruce Bochy has been chewing tobacco for forty years, dating back to his playing days. But the Associated Press reports that after a couple of his staff members said a hypnotist help them quit the nasty habit, he decided to give it a shot.
On April 15 he spent three and a half hours in the Arizona office of hypnotherapist AlVera Paxson. In a near-sleep state, Paxson gave him instructions about quitting. Bochy then headed off to the game.
Now, Bochy usually takes a chew before the game, then during the first, fifth and eighth innings, then after the game. But the funniest thing happened -- he had no craving to chew.
The craving came back the next game, though.
"It was really strange," Bochy said. "There are so many triggers that you have that make you want to put a dip in. The following day, I did have an urge, not a real strong one. I said, 'OK, I've had my day off, now it's time to put one in.'"
But he fought the craving.
"The next game I did have an urge. The next two to three days I still had an urge, but it just wasn't as strong as other times I've tried to quit," he said. "When I got past the fourth or fifth day, I was over it. I didn't crave it. I didn't want it. I was fine."
And that was it. Bochy hasn't chewed since. He said it was the best $300 he's even spent.
Now to solve the scratching problem...