Madison Bumgarner, Jake Peavy have been dipping since fifth grade

Tuesday August 4th, 2015

San Francisco Giants pitchers Madison Bumgarner and Jake Peavy have been using smokeless tobacco since they were in fifth grade, they told The New York Times.

Bumgarner, who is from Hickory, N.C., said he dips “pretty much all the time,” and is joined by around a third of his teammates, according to the Times.

After this year, the Giants will no longer be able to dip at AT&T Park after San Francisco mayor Edwin Lee signed an ordinance banning all smokeless tobacco from San Francisco's public athletic fields effective Jan. 1, 2016. Visiting teams will also have to comply with the ordinance.

To enforce the policy, the city will rely on people filing complaints when they observe violations. Violators will given citations and fined. 

“It’ll have to be a lofty fine,” Peavy, who is from Mobile, Ala., said. “Just because of the money guys are making. Or they’re not going to stop.”

• CORCORAN: Giants make needed rotation upgrade with Mike Leake trade

Bumgarner and Yankees pitcher CC Sabathia were not concerned with quitting the habit. 

“If they pass a law, I won’t do it anymore,” Sabathia said.

The Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids lobbied for the change, and hopes to eradicate the use of smokeless tobacco across Major League Baseball. The organization's president, Matthew Myers, said he expects six more cities corresponding with major league teams to follow San Francisco's lead by the end of this year. 

Major League Baseball has opposed an official ban on tobacco use in its stadiums, though the substance has been banned in the minor leagues since 1993. 

- Erin Flynn

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