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Josh Hamilton is trying to quit chewing tobacco

Jun 25, 2012, 9:31 PM EDT

Josh Hamilton Reuters Reuters

According to the Associated Press, Josh Hamilton is trying to quit chewing tobacco.

One would think that it shouldn’t be too tough for someone who has already overcome many personal demons, but it’s been a real struggle for him, not unlike many who dip or smoke regularly. Hamilton actually tried to quit last year, something we discussed on this blog, but it didn’t take.

In an effort to kick the habit for good, Hamilton is currently using toothpicks treated with tea tree oil, gum or sunflower seeds.

“It was time to do it,” Hamilton said. “It’s a habit and I don’t really enjoy it like I used to.”

Hamilton was actually chewing on one of the toothpicks when he ripped a first-inning single yesterday against the Rockies. That sounds a little risky, but hey, beats dying a slow death via dipping.

  1. Charles Gates - Jun 25, 2012 at 9:36 PM

    This must be a yearly thing.
    http://hardballtalk.nbcsports.com/2011/06/02/josh-hamilton-is-trying-to-quit-the-dip/

    • Charles Gates - Jun 25, 2012 at 9:38 PM

      Wait, that was linked already. Maybe just add a Still to the headline, DJ?

  2. nategearhart - Jun 25, 2012 at 10:18 PM

    “One would think that it shouldn’t be too tough…”
    Anyone (not including you, DJ) that would think quitting tobacco is easy under any circumstances is ridiculously obtuse.

    • sabatimus - Jun 26, 2012 at 12:04 AM

      Why NOT include DJ? He’s doing active judgment of Hamilton here, and as such loses my respect.

  3. dirtyharry1971 - Jun 25, 2012 at 10:42 PM

    why would anyone want to quit that? taste good, looks great in your mouth

    • nothanksimdriving123 - Jun 25, 2012 at 11:04 PM

      I’m assuming sarcasm Dirty, The best look is some years later, after the cancer is done with you. Chicks totally dig half a face.

      • dirtyharry1971 - Jun 26, 2012 at 12:07 AM

        i know guys who have chewed for 30 years almost and they are perfectly fine. i think the cancer scare with this stuff is greatly overrated. If it was as bad as smokes you would see a big tv campaign against chew but you don’t see that so that should tell you something right there. I think most people are just offended by it cause some folks find it gross but me personally i think it looks great. I even chew in my sleep thats how much i love it

      • Old Gator - Jun 26, 2012 at 12:28 AM

        I know older men who smoked into their seventies and beyond and died of cardiac complications. That shit will get you one way or the other, and it’s a lopsidedly unfavorable crapshoot regardless even if it doesn’t. The scientific evidence of the carcinogenic and cardiovascular-degrading properties of nicotine, nicotine tars and other little goodies in tobacco is beyond overwhelming.

  4. aceshigh11 - Jun 25, 2012 at 11:00 PM

    Shouldn’t be too tough? Some studies have shown that nicotine is more addictive than opiates.

    It’s a brutal habit to kick, made even harder by the fact that it’s easily available everywhere.

    However, Hamilton has overcome a lot of adversity in his life so hopefully he can overcome this one last addiction.

  5. ufullpj - Jun 25, 2012 at 11:20 PM

    The single hardest thing I’ve ever had to do in my life was kick a can a day Copenhagen habit…and my first day of being clean and snuff-free was Aug. 14, 1996 – and to this day, I still think about having a dip on a weekly basis, but have never relented.

    For those that think it isn’t brutal, pray that you’ll never have to find out.

  6. jonirocit - Jun 25, 2012 at 11:25 PM

    It is brutal I had hip replacement 3 weeks ago and was forced to quit . I had my last can the night before surgery and I think about it daily but I know I can’t. It’s worse than the hip pain lol.

  7. Marty - Jun 25, 2012 at 11:53 PM

    I wouldn’t consider tobacco a “personal demon” as I would ruining relationships and your life’s potential with alcohol abuse. But still, tobacco is magnitudes more difficult to quit than alcohol. Chief among the reasons is no immediate consequence to an addict as there is with a drunk.

  8. butchhuskey - Jun 26, 2012 at 12:22 AM

    This is why they invented Big league Chew – you can have something in your mouth that tastes good but doesn’t give you cancer. YAY BUBBLEGUM!

    • chumthumper - Jun 26, 2012 at 11:56 AM

      My brother-in-law chewed for years and he had a heck of a time trying to quit, but he did it. My neighbor’s kid played Legion ball and stuffed his mouth with Tootsie Rolls. It made for an impressive cheek bulge and it dribbled nicely off his chin when he spit across the plate.

  9. dickclydesdale - Jun 26, 2012 at 3:54 AM

    hes to weak to quit.

    • stlouis1baseball - Jun 26, 2012 at 9:54 AM

      No Clydesdale…it’s your race baiting ass that’s too weak (see Byrd, Marlon).
      Turn that frown upside down.
      You will be amazed at how much better you feel without the bitterness.

  10. iclight79 - Jun 26, 2012 at 4:03 AM

    What people who have never dipped or smoked don’t realize is it’s not just the physical addiction. In fact, for me when I gave up smoking a few years back, the most difficult thing to overcome was the mental addiction part. Smoking was so intertwined with my life. I’d wake up, smoke. Drink coffee, smoke. Eat, smoke. Drive, smoke. And God help me if I wanted to have a beer or step inside a casino for those first six months. Even now on occasion, more than two years later, when I get in the car I will, without thinking, crack the window and start to reach for my shirt pocket where I kept my smokes.

    Of course, I never dipped, the idea of putting that shit in my mouth was never appealing, but I am guessing when it comes to mental addiction those giving up dip deal with pretty much the same things as those who quit the sticks.

    • stlouis1baseball - Jun 26, 2012 at 10:02 AM

      Good job Light! Keep it up. As a 20+ year smoker it’s certainly something I need to give up…and soon. I have really only tried to quit once (within the last year).
      I lasted (1 1/2 weeks) until we had some Family drama. I went out on the front porch and started slamming beers and chain smoking cigarettes. You said it best here.
      “Smoking was so intertwined with my life. I’d wake up, smoke. Drink coffee, smoke. Eat, smoke. Drive, smoke.” “And God help me if I wanted to have a beer or step inside a casino for those first six months.”
      That’s just it. To a smoker…they go with everything.
      Personally, I feel a smoke and a Beer go hand-in-hand. To quit successfully one needs to make a lifestyle change. For me…that wil mean laying off the alcohol for an extended period of time.

      • mrwillie - Jun 26, 2012 at 10:26 AM

        Best of luck to you, it can be done. I was a 15 yr smoker and have now made it over a year with out one. I was on the patch for 3 days before I said “the hell with that too, I am trying to get the nicotine out of my system.” I just approached it as a personal challenge, and once I had made it a few days I was determined not to give up my streak of X amount of days without a smoke. I am stubborn like that and it worked.

        I agree a beer and smoke go hand it hand, I just went at that head on too. Yeah it sucked but after a couple of weekends it was just the new way of life.

        It’s been a over a year, and I still get the desire for a smoke, they just pass quicker now. All of it was/is worth it not to be tied to that dang box with my 20 little friends inside….too be stuck in an airport and not care, to be in a meeting for several hours and not care, to be in the non smoking section and not care….It really is freedom.

  11. DonRSD - Jun 26, 2012 at 7:32 AM

    Ufill & iclight
    Congrats on kicking the habit.
    I just quit smoking this past February.
    It wasn’t that hard. The issue I had/have is the “usual cigs”.
    Talking in the phone.
    Break/lunch at work.
    Getting in the car.
    While drinking.

    I haven’t given in, but besides the points above, it hasn’t been terribly hard.

    • stlouis1baseball - Jun 26, 2012 at 10:04 AM

      Great job Don. How long did you smoke? The hardest part for me is the drinking and smoking.
      Especially while in places that still allow smoking in bars.

  12. zackattack410 - Jun 26, 2012 at 8:06 AM

    Just FYI, dip and chew are two different forms of tobacco. Dip you pack inside your lip, Chew is in the back of your cheek and you actually chew it (hence the name).

  13. droopyyydog1 - Jun 26, 2012 at 9:22 AM

    Like Hamilton, it took me almost 2 years to finally break the habit and 5 years later I still get the urge. It is not a simple habit to quit and when your around it all the time its worse. There is a reason its called an addiction.

  14. crash1582 - Jun 26, 2012 at 9:50 AM

    Dill Pickle flavored sunflower seads is an excelent replacement. Worked for me..lol

  15. aiede - Jun 26, 2012 at 10:53 AM

    Iggy Pop kicked both heroin and cigarettes. He said that cigarettes were harder, “but junk was messier.”

    I smoked for 16 years and finally quit, going on four years clean this Labor Day.

  16. banjojones - Jun 26, 2012 at 12:20 PM

    Addiction is a mind game, for the most part. Yes, there is a physical component, but if you set your mind to it, there is no reason anyone cannot quit tobacco.

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