The Detroit Tigers' singing hot dog man may have been fired for his disdain of ketchup.
Charley Marcuse, known as the “Singing Hot Dog Man,” was fired last week after a short meeting with Sportservice, the team’s concession vendor, The Detroit News reports. Marcuse has been singing at Comerica Park since the stadium opened in 2000.
“It’s gonna be very weird. I’ll sort of have the mentality as if they’re away. So it’ll be weird knowing they’re here,” Marcuse, 33, told the Detroit News. “It’ll probably take a little while for it really to hit home. I hope that there’s some way to come back.”
Sportservice decline to discuss why it fired Marcuse, who is said to favor mustard instead of ketchup on franks. Detroit News' sources say that may have played a role in his dismissal.
Some baseball fans said Marcuse was adamant that customers put mustard on their hot dogs. Indeed, some accused him of becoming “combative” when fans ask for ketchup and several filed complaints, according to the report. Marcuse declined to directly address whether his taste in condiments led to his dismissal.
“It was general employee conduct,” Marcuse told the Detroit News. “I’ve vended the same way for the past 15 years, so there’s nothing new to any of this.” The hot dog vendor isn’t entirely biased against ketchup -- Marcuse said that he has carried the condiment.
“[Fans] asked me to have ketchup certainly,” he said. “And I do carry ketchup.”
Marcuse’s views on condiments are only part of his shtick. He's also known for singing while dispensing hot dogs. In 2004, the Tigers tried to ban him from singing, only relented after enacting rules to limit his antics, the Detroit News reports.
The Tigers have yet to comment on the “Singing Hot Dog Man’s” dismissal, and are unlikely to do so, as Marcuse isn’t an official team employee. Regardless, Marcuse will likely have to sling mustard on his own time for now.