Former Philadelphia Phillies first baseman Ryan Howard is best known for hitting home runs -- or striking out.
But now, the "Big Piece" is the new part-owner of a chicken joint in South Jersey.
The Burlington County restaurant even adopted Howard's baseball nickname for one of its popular menu items: "The Big Piece Chicken Sandwich."
Colbie’s Southern Kissed Chicken, a new restaurant in Mount Holly, New Jersey, opened on Monday.
Howard, 41, is known for being the fastest player in baseball history to reach 100 home runs, and 200 home runs, topping Ralph Kiner.
WPVI first reported that Howard is part-owner of the Burlington County eatery, with Mike and Craig Colby and celebrity chef Fabio Viviani.
“I’m very excited for it. I hope the people can check it out and hopefully they’re excited for it too,” Howard told 6abc.
Howard’s 13-year Major League Baseball career ended in 2016. He was the 2005 National League Rookie of the Year, 2006 NL MVP and 2008 World Series champion. His long-term career suffered setbacks from strikeouts and serious injuries.
From 2006 to 2009, Howard was one of the top players in baseball. In each of those four seasons, he hit at least 45 home runs with no fewer than 136 RBI. In 2006, Howard led the Major League with a career-best 58 home runs.
The chicken restaurant will have a drive-thru, an outdoor seating area and a delivery service through DoorDash and Grubhub. Colbie’s also will have a southern, cafeteria-style indoor dining area that can seat 115 people, according to the owner.
Those ordering The Big Piece Chicken Sandwich better bring a power-hitter appetite:
“I don’t want to say forced, but I was encouraged to make the first one. So my first job in high school I used to work at a fast-food restaurant. So I kind of knew my way around the backline a little bit,” Howard told 6abc. ”It consists of lettuce, tomato, cheese, pickle and a little garlic aioli. It’s very good, very good.”
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