Giants' new manager has the strangest eating habits in baseball

Gabe Kapler, the new manager of the <a class="link rapid-noclick-resp" href="/mlb/teams/san-francisco/" data-ylk="slk:San Francisco Giants">San Francisco Giants</a>, has some really, really weird eating habits. (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images)
Gabe Kapler, the new manager of the San Francisco Giants, has some really, really weird eating habits. (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images)

Gabe Kapler, the new manager of the San Francisco Giants, has some weird eating habits. He’s a very health conscious guy, and at times he’s taken that to the ultimate degree in dedication to his overall wellness.

A profile of Kapler by Ryan Gorcey of the Mercury News describes one of those weird, extreme interactions between Kapler and food. When Kapler was playing for Moorpark College in 1995, he forgot to pack his meal when the team was traveling for an away game. What happened next was something that several of his teammates would remember for a long, long time.

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Kapler credits a Moorpark nutrition class for teaching him the importance of eating right. When his team stopped at McDonald’s on the way back from a game at Cuesta College in San Luis Obispo, Kapler, having forgotten to pack his usual tuna-on-rye sandwich, peeled the skin off of all 40 of his Chicken McNuggets.

Imagine yourself peeling the brown, squishy skin off of 40 little chicken nuggets, and eating what’s inside. Now imagine yourself doing that, but on a bus, surrounded by other people who are likely fascinated with watching you perform a skin-ectomy on 40 entire nuggets. It must have been quite the thing to witness.

This isn’t the first time we’ve heard about Kapler’s unorthodox eating habits. After the Philadelphia Phillies hired him to be their manager in October 2018, Phillies beat writer Matt Gelb unearthed this incredible nugget (no pun intended) from when Kapler managed the Greenville Drive in 2007. It’s about his love of ice cream and how he chooses to “eat” it.

“He was so into health,” [Greenville catcher Jon] Still said. “He’s addicted to ice cream. So he would sit there and lick ice cream but have a cup and spit it into it. He would lick it just for the taste but didn’t want to eat it. I told him, ‘Dude, that’s like Unabomber type stuff.’ That’s a thing he did.”

Kapler later confirmed the story to Sports Illustrated’s Tom Verducci, but clarified that it didn’t happen when he was in Greenville.

“It never happened in Greenville,” he says. “It happened with my girlfriend at the time, who became my wife, who’s now my ex-wife. We were walking together and I was on a very strict chicken-breast-and-beans diet, and she was eating an ice cream cone. And I was like, ‘That looks amazing.’ I took a bite of it and spit it out, because I wanted the flavor but didn’t want to go off track.”

Kapler did the ice cream spitting thing on a date with the woman he would eventually marry (and later divorce)! I bet you thought the story about a major league manager who used to peel the skin off of his chicken nuggets had already reached its maximum weirdness capacity. It turns out there’s always room for more weirdness, at least when Kapler is involved.

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