clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

On the third day of Christmas, the D-backs gave to me...

No French hens to be found under the Arizona Christmas tree. Was there something equally tasty?

Sean Gallup/Getty Images

A bit of a closer battle this time, with Makakilo's "Three field shifts" taking an early lead, but was eventually reeled in and overhauled by azrattler, who repeated his victory for Day 2, despite a late surge into redness from "victory hens". The rest of you need to step up your game, or I'll just have to hand over the reins of this entire series to him. On the plus side, I don't have to do more than repeat the full version of the Day 3 entry a couple of times, and I will have reached the necessary word-count. So, what did the D-backs give to me on the third day of Christmas?

Three free tacos
* with the purchase of a large drink
** between 4-6pm the next day
*** at participating locations

Damn, this stanza is sounding a bit more like the Allan Sherman version of the song: "A statue of a lady with a clock where her stomach ought to be." It means I now have to offer a statistical analysis of fast-food promotion. Thanks, azrattler! [Waves fists maniacally]. Before this season, the rules of the promotion were changed. Previously, it required the Diamondbacks to score six runs for it to kick in, but for 2015, that value was reduced to five. And, of course, the Diamondbacks responded by putting up more runs than any team except the Rockies. Taco Bell may not have expected that, though one imagines the profit on a large drink likely covers the cost of three tacos.

You can kinda understand the reasoning, because last season, Arizona scored 6+ times on only 29 occasions, which was far and away the lowest tally in franchise history, a dozen below the previous worst, set in 2014. It was certainly a far cry from more offensive-minded eras; in 1999, the Diamondbacks would have delivered free tacos, even under the old terms of the promotion, no less than 77 times. Had the rules remained the same, 2015 would have seen a significant rebound, as Arizona scored six or more on 53 occasions. That number has been surpassed just once since 2006 (it happened 56 times in 2012).

Five or more runs made sense last year, as the D-backs also reached the mark in 56 games there. However, this season, it allowed the promotion to kick in an extra 13 times, making a total of 66 in all. The sharp offensive improvement helped feed Arizona. We also had the 50% off Papa John's for a win (79 times, up fifteen on last year) and the free Jumbo Jack from Jack in the Box when a D-back hit a homer at Chase Field, again with the purchase of a large drink (perhaps surprisingly, only three up at 46 times). On 21 glorious occasions, the three promos kicked in after the same game - though what you'd do with all those large drinks, I dunno.

Interesting to compare these promotions with other teams. For example, take the Papa John's offer. The Twins also just have to win. In Kansas City, they must win and score five. The White Sox need to score five, but in Washington, you have to wait for the Nationals, not just to win but also score seven times. But pity poor Rockies fans - as if a) sucking, and b) Dinger weren't enough punishment. Their team can score seven runs and they will only get discounted, not free tacos with their large drink, still having to pay 50 cents a taco. Even that kicked in just 36 times last season, as if their year wasn't bad enough. And if a city ever had the munchies, it was probably Denver in 2015!

Updating the song:

On the third day of Christmas, the D-backs gave to me...
Three free tacos...
Two gold gloves...
and a Corbin with a strike three!

We now move onto the fourth day, and the original song continues its avian theme, by gift-wrapping (some presumably rather disgruntled) "four calling birds". Diamondbacks-themed alternatives should be provided in the comments, and the most-rec'd selection will be honored tomorrow.