WEYMOUTH — Luis Tiant leaned back in a brown leather sofa in Cigar City's lounge and took a puff on one of his own cigars.
He may have looked like any other 67-year-old, but the 2004 World Series ring that sparkled on his right hand was proof otherwise.
Tiant is known for his years pitching with the Red Sox just as much as he is known for being an avid cigar smoker. Now he's using the former to promote the latter.
Tiant, who has been a special assignment instructor for the team's minor league system since 2002, was in town Saturday to promote his El Tiante Cigars
. Tiant was known as "El Tiante" while playing for Boston from 1971 to 1978.
"In the islands, everyone smoked lots of cigars," said Tiant, who was born and grew up in Cuba. Tiant started smoking when he was 17.
Tiant, who played with five other major league teams during his baseball career, said he enjoyed playing with the Red Sox the most.
"I played with a lot of great guys in Boston, and the people were great to me. We all got along very well," Tiant said.
Tiant had nothing but praise for the current Red Sox owners, saying "they respect you for what you did for the Sox in the past."
Tiant has lived in Southboro for seven years, and for nearly half that time he has worked on developing the El Tiante cigars.
"My name on the cigar wouldn't do me any good if it was not a good cigar," Tiant said.
El Tiante cigars are made from tobacco leaves grown in Estelli, Nicaragua.
"Luis is known for two things: Playing baseball and smoking cigars," Kevin Anderson, a partner in El Tiante Cigars, said.
Anderson said all the cigar blends are based on Tiant's tastes, and that it took nearly a year to create the "perfect" cigar.
"Nothing goes forward without his approval, from the labeling to the cigar itself," Anderson said.