LOS ANGELES, April 9, 2014 — Over the weekend in their home opening series against the San Francisco Giants, the Los Angeles Dodgers unleashed a live bobblehead on the stadium. While the human bobblehead strongly resembles that which most would consider a mascot, Dodgers executive vice president of marketing Lon Rosen told the Los Angeles Times, “It’s not a mascot. It’s a unique performance character.”
The Dodgers will not allow the bobblehead on the field or to dance on dugouts or any of the other things a traditional mascot is normally seen doing during a game. It has no name. It has no gender. It just is. You will only find it roaming the concourses taking photos with fans.
Since it is not officially a mascot, the Dodgers remain one of only three teams without a mascot. The Angels and Yankees are the other two.
If you were surprised hear that there are 27 MLB teams with mascots, you’ll be even more surprised to know there are actually 35 official mascots in MLB.
Arizona Diamondbacks: D. Baxter the Bobcat — D. Baxter the Bobcat looks like a large bobcat in Diamondbacks gear. Created by Jay Bell’s son, Bentley, D. Baxter the Bobcat was named after the nickname D-Backs and their stadium, which used to be nicknamed The Bob. Arizona introduced their mascot in 2000. In 2013, Luchador, a guy with a Diamondbacks jersey and a luchador wrestling mask was officially added as a secondary mascot.
Atlanta Braves: Homer the Brave — Homer the Brave is a baseball head mascot in a Braves uniform. He was introduced in 1989 after the Braves parted ways with their longtime mascot, Chief Noc-A-Homa, who used to come out of a teepee in the bleachers and dance when a Brave hit a homerun.
Baltimore Orioles: The Oriole Bird — The Oriole Bird, a giant oriole was introduced in 1979. Baltimore takes home the prize for the least imaginative name for a mascot, at least until the Dodgers acknowledge that their unnamed “unique performance character” is an official mascot.
Chicago Cubs: Clark — This year is the first year the for the official Cubs mascot, Clark. He is a large furry bear cub. Clark gets his name from Clark St., which is one of the streets that borders Wrigley Field. Clark should not be confused with an unofficial Cub mascot named Billy who recently got into a bar fight after someone tried to take off his large head.
Chicago White Sox: Southpaw — White Sox mascot, Southpaw, is a green character with yellow hair covering his body in a White Sox uniform. You can follow him on Twitter @Southpaw.
Cincinnati Reds: A Plethora — The Cincinnati Reds love mascots, period. They love them so much that one mascot was not good enough, neither was two or even three. The Reds have four mascots, four. It all started in the 70s with Mr. Red, a baseball head mascot. He went away in the 1980s, which left the Reds again with no mascots. This clearly angered the Cincinnati baseball gods. Mr. Red returned for good in 1997. Then in 2003, the Reds celebrated their move into a new ballpark with the addition of mascot number two, Gapper, a large fury creature of sorts. In 2007, Mr. Redlegs, a mustachioed baseball head mascot, was introduced as the third mascot. Finally, the Reds reached cat lady status with the addition of a fourth mascot, Rosie Red, a female version of the baseball-headed Mr. Red.
Cleveland Indians: Slider — Contrary to what many think, the controversial Chief Wahoo is not the mascot of the Cleveland Indians. The official mascot of the Indians is a furry purple character with yellow spots, eyebrows and mouth named Slider. He was introduced in 1990.
Colorado Rockies: Dinger — Dinger is purple triceratops. A triceratops was chosen as the mascot because a large triceratops skull was unearthed during the construction of Coors Field. Dinger was introduced to fans in 1994.
Detroit Tigers: Paws — Paws, a tiger in a Detroit uniform, was introduced to Tigers fans in 1995. You can rent Paws out for parties at a rate of $125 per hour.
Houston Astros: Orbit — Orbit is a hairy green Sesame Street style character with antennae, which is supposed to be an alien. Orbit was introduced in 1990 to replace Chester Charge as the Astros official mascot. Houston replaced Orbit with another mascot, Junction Jack, to celebrate moving out of the Astrodome. Orbit was finally brought back last season to celebrate the Astros moving to the American League.
Kansas City Royals: Sluggerrr — Sluggerrr is the hot dog shooting mascot of the Royals. Introduced in 1996, Sluggerrr is a lion in a Royals uniform who wears a crown that seems to blend into his face.
Miami Marlins: Billy the Marlin — Billy the Marlin is a marlin with arms and legs. A marlin is a billfish, which is where owner Wayne Huizinga got the idea to give Billy got his name. He was introduced in the Marlins inaugural season of 1993.
Milwaukee Brewers: Bernie Brewer — Bernie Brewer has a large head and a bushy yellow mustache. Originally created in honor of Milt Mason, Bernie Brewer was introduced in 1973, but was retired in 1984. The fans voted Bernie Brewer back in 1993.
Minnesota Twins: T.C. Bear — T.C. Bear was introduced as the Twins mascot in 2000. He is expectedly a bear in a Twins uniform. Mike Trout may want to bring extra security when the Angels visit Minnesota. According to the Twins Website, T.C. Bear holds the Carnivore League record for most trout eaten with 12.
New York Mets: Mr. and Mrs. Met — Mr. Met, a baseball head mascot, is the granddaddy of them all in the world of baseball mascots. He was the first mascot in Major League baseball, debuting in 1964. In 1975, Mr. Met found the love of his life, Mrs. Met, also a baseball head mascot. The two lived happily at Shea Stadium until both were retired by the 80s. Mr. Met returned to Shea in 1994, but it would not be until 2013 that Mrs. Met returned to the Mets, this time at Citi Field.
Oakland Athletics: Stomper — An elephant in an A’s uniform named Stomper is the mascot in Oakland. Based on the logo created by Connie Mack during the Philadelphia Athletics years, Stomper was introduced as the mascot in 1997.
Philadelphia Phillies: Phillie Phanatic — The Phillie Phanatic is a large green character with hair and a trunk like snout that sticks straight out in a Phillies uniform. This is probably one of the more recognizable mascots in baseball. The Phillie Phanatic was introduced in 1978 as a replacement for Philadelphia Phil and Philadelphia Phillis. In between innings of 1988 game between the Dodgers and Phillies, the Phanatic brought out a life size stuffed Dodger manikin that looked like Tommy Lasorda. Lasorda was not a phan of the Phanatic’s antics and went after the mascot. The Dodger manager wrestled the manikin away from the mascot and returned to the dugout.
Pittsburgh Pirates: Pirate Parrot — Pirate Parrot is large and hairy green parrot. The mascot was introduced in the 1979 season. In 1985, during the Pittsburgh Drug Trials, it was revealed that Kevin Koch, who wore the Pirate costume at the time was using cocaine while performing and he introduced players to drug dealers. Koch was fired, but the Pirate Parrot lives on.
San Diego Padres: Swinging Friar — Contrary to popular belief, the San Diego Chicken is not, nor has it ever been the official mascot of the Padres. The Swinging Friar, a large cartoon-like version of a friar, has actually been a mascot since the Padres Pacific Coast League days in 1961. The Swinging Friar used to just be a regular guy in friar clothes. He is the only mascot in MLB without his own web page.
San Francisco Giants: Lou Seal — Lou Seal has been a fixture at San Francisco Giants home games since 1996. According to the Giants website, Lou, a giant gray seal who grew up in San Francisco, was first spotted on pier 39 by Dusty Baker and has turned down numerous offers to mascot for other teams.
Seattle Mariners: Mariner Moose — Mariner Moose became the official mascot after a contest in 1990. Shockingly, Mariner Moose is a moose in a Mariner uniform. The mascot is likely most famous for breaking his ankle in a rollerblade accident during the 1995 ALDS.
St. Louis Cardinals: Fredbird — Fredbird is a giant cardinal in a St. Louis uniform. Fredbird was introduced in 1979 and has been popular ever since. The Cardinals claim Fredbird has beaked 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 fans’ heads in his career.
Tampa Bay Rays: Raymond — Raymond is a blue long-haired character, who according to the Rays website is, a “previously undiscovered species of dog known as ‘Canus Manta Whatthefluffalus’ or in layman’s terms, a Seadog.” He was discovered by scouts while they were fishing in the Gulf of Mexico in 1998.
Texas Rangers: Rangers Captain — Rangers Captain was introduced to Rangers fans in 2002. He is a 6’8” tan horse in a Rangers uniform who, according to the team’s website, throws “smoke.”
Toronto Blue Jays: Ace and Junior — The Blue Jays have two mascots. Ace, who looks like a giant blue jay, was introduced in 2002 along with a female blue jay named Diamond as replacements for BJ Birdie. Diamond, for some reason, was removed from her post in 2004, leaving Ace as the sole mascot. That is, until 2011 when Toronto found Junior, Ace’s younger brother. Junior is half the size of the elder Ace and only appears on Junior Saturdays.
Washington Nationals: Screech — Screech was introduced in the Nationals’ inaugural season in D.C. in 2005. Screech is a giant bald eagle in a Nats uniform. Unsurprisingly, his favorite band is The Eagles.
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