Major League Baseball urged to tell tobacco "You're out!" - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Major League Baseball urged to tell tobacco "You're out!"

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SAN DIEGO (CBS 8) - The Padres are celebrating their opening day win over the Cardinals, but Padre fans that smoke or chew tobacco aren't happy about a proposal to ban all tobacco products from Major League Baseball parks nationwide.

The Campaign for Tobacco Free Kids is part of a heavy handed push to force Major League Baseball to strike out the use of tobacco all together. Senate hearings over a year ago began an attack to yank tobacco from the mouths of pro ball players.

"Since 2003 we see that smokeless tobacco use is actually up 36 percent," Dave Dobbins of the Campaign for Tobacco Free Kids said.

Dobbins says 15 percent of all high school kids say they've tried it. In a 1997 interview, Tony Gwynn admitted he had a problem with smokeless tobacco. Though his doctor couldn't say that tobacco use directly caused two tumors to form in his mouth, Gwynn knew otherwise.

"There's no reason for a tumor to grow there, other than I usually chew tobacco on the right side," Gwynn said.

From baseball greats like Joe Garagiola Sr. to former Marlins player Kevin Gregg, players have helped to send a message to the young fans, but the campaign says if it's banned in the minors, NCAA, and NHL, the majors need to get out of the on deck circle and play ball.

News 8 put a call out to management and the public affairs department of the San Diego Padres to get their take on the ban request. Our calls have not been returned.

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