“Steal a Base Steal a Taco” originated in 2007 as a way of celebrating the stolen base, which has declined in numbers over the last two decades, but remains an exciting part of the game for fans. As a result, the first stolen base has quickly become a much-anticipated part of the Fall Classic every year.
“When the players are just as excited as the fans to be a part of history, you’re impacting the game in real-time and in a real way,” said Tracee Larocca, Taco Bell’s Head of Brand Creative. “Partnering with Major League Baseball and the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum to send the 10th stolen base to Cooperstown and tell the story of ‘Steal a Base Steal a Taco’ is an amazing honor and a true testament to connecting America’s love of baseball and tacos like only Taco Bell can.”
The base heading to Cooperstown will join other artifacts documenting past “Taco Heroes” World Series accomplishments already recognized within the Hall of Fame’s collection.
Red Sox center fielder Jacoby Ellsbury became the first to claim the title of “Taco Hero” in 2007, when he swiped second base in Game 2 of the World Series against the Rockies. Ellsbury posted a 1.188 OPS in the Series to help lead Boston to a sweep of Colorado.
The story of Ellsbury’s epic 2007 Fall Classic is told in Cooperstown through one of his bats, which he used to smack four hits, including three doubles, in Game 3, leading the Red Sox to a 10-5 victory.
In 2020, Mookie Betts became the first two-time “Taco Hero”, when he stole second in the fifth inning of Game 1 for the Dodgers against the Rays. The Dodgers would go on to win the Series in six games. Betts’ first stint as “Taco Hero” came in a Red Sox uniform in 2018, when he stole second in Game 1 of the Fall Classic against the Dodgers, which Boston would win four games to one.
Betts’ road jersey from Games 3, 4 and 5 of the 2020 Fall Classic, during which he posted an .898 OPS with two homers and 3 RBI in his first year with Los Angeles, is preserved in Cooperstown.