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Culture

Toasted grasshoppers hit a home run with baseball fans

The Seattle Mariners didn't expect to sell a lot of the crunchy critters, but the treat is so popular the stadium has to impose limits.

It sounded like a joke: the Seattle Mariners announced last week they'd be selling toasted grasshoppers at home games at Safeco Field.

Well, who's laughing now? Not the grasshoppers of the Emerald City, who are probably frantically fleeing for cover after they hit an unexpected home run with Mariners fans.

Just a week ago, Mariners spokeswoman Rebecca Hale told ESPN, "We don't expect to sell a lot of them, but it's a fun thing to offer and it's authentic."

Fast-forward to this week, after the Mariners' home opener Monday night. Now Hale tells ESPN Poquitos' restaurant stand sold 901 orders of the insects (roughly 18,000 grasshoppers) over the team's first three home games.

The grasshoppers are toasted in a chili lime salt and cost $4 for a 4-ounce cup.

Starting Friday, the team started limiting sales to 312 orders per game. Seems like a strange number? It's meant to honor team great Edgar Martinez's career batting average of .312.

Will the treat inspire the Mariners to great things?

They did win their home opener Monday, but as of Friday, the team was in last place in the American League West.

Still, fans can dream.