The Scott Spiezio Diet

Jeff · March 1, 2005 at 11:44 am · Filed Under Mariners 

Whither Scott Spiezio? Now that we have two rites of spring out of the way — Chris Snelling’s injury and discussion of Griffey trade rumors — Bob Finnigan completes the trifecta with the annual “he’s in the best shape of his life” story, and this time, the best baseball player in the band Sand Frog is the subject.

Lest you assume this is an average tale of athletic endurance and personal commitment to self-improvement, read on. It’s much more amusing.

In an offseason where we’ve already seen Alex Rodriguez brag about his early and often workouts, heard more than we ever wanted to about BALCO and flax seed oil, the Scott Spiezio workout program affords a much more real-world example plan for average folk to relate to. No, the bard of backup infield didn’t hire some butt-kicking personal trainer. He merely made a few dietary adjustments. What adjustments?

“I used to eat ice cream every night, pizza five, six times a week,” he said. “I used to have a Krispy Kreme (donut) every morning when I got here. “

Great John Kruk’s ghost!

That’s right: Spiezio stopped eating Krispy Kremes every morning, ice cream every night and pizza for almost every dinner. Moving these items off of the training table has helped him cut his body fat by about six percent. If nothing else, the new diet should help Spiezio in the quest to actually hit his weight this year.

Though this sounds more like “Super Size Me: Seattle” than an Atkins-level dietary revelation, the results are drawing good reviews.

Trainer Rich [sic] Griffin was impressed by the offseason effort, noting that Spiezio probably ranks among the top 10 altered bodies the Mariners have seen in back-to-back seasons.

That’s a compliment, right? That says more about how good he looks now than how he looked last year, right? Please tell me Griffin didn’t follow that up with “Off the record, if you had painted him purple last season, he would have looked like Grimace.”

(There has to be a way to quote the “altered bodies” space without someone making a steroids joke, doesn’t there? Okay, here goes: wait until Griffin sees the cyborg body Snelling is going to come back with after surgery! All right, I think that went as well as could be expected. Now there’s no need for any hat size cracks.)

The piece’s last few paragraphs repeat that the Mariners are actively trying to trade Spiezio. Given how much business the team’s done with San Diego in recent years, it’s a good thing that McDonald’s founder Ray Kroc doesn’t own the Padres any more.

Look, history shows that you don’t have to be a supreme physical specimen to be a supremely talented hitter. Spiezio is to be commended, though, for his renewed commitment to good health, and I for one am happy for him.

Almost as happy as his arteries must be.


32 Responses to “The Scott Spiezio Diet”

  1. David J Corcoran on March 1st, 2005 12:04 pm

    I’ll have you know my pap had a big mac everyday for 9 straight years, and a Wendy’s double every day for 15 straight before that and still passes his cholesterol tests.

  2. Shigetoshi Hasegawa on March 1st, 2005 12:14 pm

    “If nothing else, the new diet should help Spiezio in the quest to actually hit his weight this year.”

    Buahaha. That’s the quote of the day Jeff, keep it up!

  3. Todd on March 1st, 2005 12:18 pm

    Maybe the recent realignement of the food pyramid by the U.S. goverment influence Spiezio’s decision to alter his diet. Nothing wrong with a few leafy greens.

  4. Bill Fugazi on March 1st, 2005 12:30 pm

    Explain this to me: if your career, for which you are paid millions of dollars annually to perform, was dependant upon some form of physical performance– why on earth would you eat a diet like that? I don’t eat like that, and my job only requires that I sit at a computer all day.

    I mean seriously… isn’t that a little like if Steven Hawking were to smoke dope every day?

  5. Christopher Michael on March 1st, 2005 12:30 pm

    No wonder Krispy Kreme stock is going down the drain. First Vin Baker stops eating it and now this…

  6. ajp on March 1st, 2005 1:00 pm

    Is there some statistical backing for your, “…best baseball player in the band Sand Frog…” assertion?

  7. Colby Cockrell on March 1st, 2005 1:05 pm

    I read the headline at first as “Scott Spezio Dealt.” My heart leapt for a beat, then came back down to earth.

    Which team would actually trade for Scott Spezio right now? Anybody’s thoughts?

  8. Aaron on March 1st, 2005 1:09 pm


    I glanced at the title quickly while I was checking for new posts further down, and thought it said “The Scott Spiezio Deal.”

    Got my hopes up for nothing.

  9. Aaron on March 1st, 2005 1:10 pm

    Darn that Colby for stealing my thunder!

  10. David J Corcoran on March 1st, 2005 1:16 pm

    Let’s see, who is desparate for an overpaid 1st/3rd baseman who could hit OK? The Brewers? Nah… This sounds like the D-Rays cup of tea.

  11. Pete K on March 1st, 2005 1:39 pm

    There are professional pool players with a more regimented diet regime than Spezio pre 2005.

    I find it amazing that pro baseball players aren’t given diet sheets that they must obey upon pain of death (or being fired)

    Surely any professional athlete, and sports organisation, must realise the correlation between performance and diet. Especially for sports for which the ability to move faster than a tectonic plate is considered desirable (albeit not essential).

    You would asume that the days of the Babe Ruth diet died around about the same time as the Babe did. But maybe not.

  12. stiletto on March 1st, 2005 1:54 pm

    I’ve forwarded the article to Rich Garces. who knows…

  13. Evan on March 1st, 2005 1:55 pm

    As Jeff pointed out, you don’t need to be terribly fit to be a great baseball player (though I don’t think you’d want Mo Vaughn playing third, either).

    Baseball is a game of specialised skills. It’s not a game that places a premium on fitness. Some professional poker players stay fit so they can remain alert over multi-day tournaments. The baseball position that offers the least frequest rest during the game is pitcher, and you still see guys like David Wells having great careers.

    For those of you who saw Supersize Me, remember the rush Morgan Spurlock got just after eating. He could probably manage acceptable levels of activity for an hour or two after a meal, and his body wasn’t used to the diet. For someone who’s been on it for years, the swings probably aren’t that bad.

  14. Steve on March 1st, 2005 1:57 pm

    #4 … isn’t that a little like if Steven Hawking were to smoke dope every day?

    How do you know he doesn’t? Do you have any data to back up that claim? And even if he did, can you quantify how that has affected his VORP (Value over Replacment Physicist)?

  15. JPWood on March 1st, 2005 1:59 pm

    Totally off the subject, but my 10 years in Japan tell me that you have a disarmingly ready grasp of distant-opposites-that-attract that comes only from extended experience off the edge of the pre-Magellan globe. Fun to read.

  16. Shoeless Jose on March 1st, 2005 2:06 pm

    Re required diets (#11) If this were a pro sport that had its players’ contracts under any kind of control, that might be possible. But this is a sport where Giambi (for example) managed to get penalties for steroid use removed from his contract. With that as a backdrop, how likely do you think it is that a team is going to be able to require its players to eat in any way other than exactly how they please? Short of somebody like Whole Foods (yeah, right) offering a lucrative endorsement contract with the proviso that the player ate a healthy diet, it isn’t going to happen. A team might get somewhere offering bonuses for certain weight / body fat / cholesterol targets, but they’re not going to be able to require it.

  17. Basebliman on March 1st, 2005 2:17 pm

    that grimace comment had me rolling! great work!

  18. Spiegs on March 1st, 2005 2:25 pm

    Anyone remember that old Sonic sixth man Quentin something? He played well for half a season, got injured, then ate a ton and put on a bunch of weight.

  19. Adam T on March 1st, 2005 2:35 pm

    Re: #17

    Do you mean…

    Post-Sonic Shawn Kemp? -or- Vin Baker?

  20. Spiegs on March 1st, 2005 2:47 pm

    I think his name was Quentin Daily but it was so long ago that I really don’t remember.

  21. Change on March 1st, 2005 3:05 pm

    If we deal Spezio does that make it more likely that Bucky is on the team? If so I’m all for it, if not I say keep him. I like him, he’s a gamer.

  22. Aaron on March 1st, 2005 3:55 pm

    If Spiezio can hit an empty .260 off the bench…..that makes him better than anybody fighting for the last two seats on the pine.

  23. J.R. on March 1st, 2005 4:21 pm

    [off topic] Is anyone a ESPN Insider subscriber? They have a bunch of articles up about the M’s today and I was wondering what they are saying about them this year and who the two Mariners on “Top prospects” list are. [/off topic]

  24. Keith on March 1st, 2005 4:33 pm

    [Off Topic] The M’s listed on ESPN are Jeremy Reed (3) and King Felix (6). Nick Swisher of the A’s is listed as the top rookie prospect.

    And now back to our normal programming… Grimace… Classic.

  25. Bryan Clark on March 1st, 2005 5:16 pm

    Great stuff – I wonder how a sports journalist can get sucked into the annual “best shape of his life” article each and every year. And the funny thing is, I generally respect the talents of the Seattle Times, P-I, and the Herald and Tribune writers. I’m a transplant who now lives in San Diego and I print up Mariners news every day and read it with the local paper… and with the junk that the Union Tribune puts out, it’s always disappointing to when there’s a day with almost no real NEWS in the daily Mariners news.

  26. Jon Helfgott on March 1st, 2005 6:29 pm

    It was Quentin Daily.

  27. chris d on March 1st, 2005 8:48 pm

    I get disgusted when I hear that these players ,making millions of dollars and having high expectations placed on them, are coming to camp out of shape [with very poor diets- ala Spezio, Vin Baker], possibly having drinking problems [Vin Baker, maybe Jose Paniagua], having psychological problems like depression [ Vin Baker] or domestic violence issues. I would think that teams would have these players get not only physicals but mental health exams as well as therapy to help them grow up. Also, have a weight clause in their contract for those who can’t control their food intake.

  28. Chickenhawk on March 1st, 2005 9:29 pm

    I assume he cut his body fat TO 6%, not BY 6% – otherwise he may have gone from fat to fat minus 6% of that fat. Which is still fat.

  29. Jeff on March 1st, 2005 10:20 pm

    He went from 14 ½ percent body fat to 8 ½. You’re right, cutting it by six percent is not the right way to write that. Oh well. My bad.

  30. EG on March 1st, 2005 11:08 pm

    Sorry Chris anyone can have mental problems , being an athlete doesn’t clear you of that and sometimes people forget that. And when I saw spezio this year I didn’t even recognize him , he is absolutely jacked.

  31. Ripped Daddy on June 2nd, 2005 2:48 pm

    Even as a Division I college baseball player I know that doghnuts and pizza everyday are unhealthy for you. If you throw french fries in the mix, those three foods are quite possibly the worst for lowering body fat and enhancing muscle size. Anyone who has played serious baseball before will tell you that baseball players are not overpaid because of the 162 game season. The aches and pains that many of the position players deal with everyday is extraordinary. The MLB should be more concerned with pain killing drugs than steroids which are a far bigger problem amongst baseball players. And this problem not only occurs in the pros but on the college level as well… I can tell you from experience

  32. Quentin Daily fan on December 21st, 2005 1:58 pm

    Quentin was a number one draft choice of the Chicago Bulls pre Michael Jordan. I think he was run out of town because of problems with illegal substances and I guess from your previous posts ended up in Seattle. Good to hear that someone else got to see is sweet jumper.