Baseball may be as American as hot dogs and apple pie, but you won't find either of those things served in the Texas Rangers locker room anymore. Like many major league teams, the Rangers are taking a swing at what the players eat before and after games.
"A lot of these guys need a lot of calories, but we want to make sure it's the right kind of calories that are going to fuel performance", said Amy Goodson, a dietitian hired to help the Rangers improve their eating habits.
When Goodson arrived at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington, she says the players had pizza and hamburgers in the team clubhouse before games, and even a slushie machine. The menu this season will look more like a California spa, with grilled chicken and fish, beans and rice, and more balanced sports drinks to wash it down.
The players admit there have been a few groans from those missing the old buffet. But, pitcher Tommy Hunter says it's been easier to keep his diet on track without easy access to the old clubhouse cuisine.
"If you have it available to you, you're going to take advantage of it every once in a while", Hunter said.
Goodson, the team dietitian, is also designing personal nutrition plans for players to help them eat healthy in the off season, and during long summer road trips. First baseman Chris Davis says it's already paying off.
"When I first started doing it, I noticed my energy level was better for longer periods of time", Davis said during a recent winter work-out.
So when the Rangers step up to the plate this spring, it may be what's on their plates that helps make a difference.