Update, July 21: a bear.
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|The Phanatic, Philadelphia Phillies, August 1993.
This one was taken at Dukes Stadium in Albuquerque, New Mexico. The Phanatic, like some other mascots, will occasionally tour with the team or do promotional gigs at other stadiums. Being a lifelong Phillies fan (or "phan," if you will), I couldn't pass up the chance to get a picture with our furry green friend.
|The Famous Chicken, February 1998.
Better known as the San Diego Chicken. Strictly speaking, the Chicken isn't the Padres' mascot anymore; he freelances. I got this shot at a Chesapeake Icebreakers game. He was the first mascot I ever heard SAY anything (it was just "uh, sure" when I asked for a photo, but still). The small red-headed child isn't mine, thank you very much.
|Sport, June 1998.
Another free-lance mascot; this was taken at a Frederick Keys game. One of the funnier mascots I've encountered, and it's no wonder: it's the same guy who was the original Phillie Phanatic, arguably the best mascot ever. I would definitely recommend going to see Sport if he's in your town. He also spoke; I guess the free-lance guys do that. And he doesn't ALWAYS wear the dress; that was just the shtick of the moment.
|Youppi, Montreal Expos, July 1999.
Youppi proved himself to be male by lavishing a little more attention on my friend Ellyn than she wanted.
|Fredbird, St. Louis Cardinals, July 1999.
Fred spent pretty much the entire game in one section of the lower deck (bad), but paused for this photo while fleeing from a pack of children (good).
|Lou Seal, San Francisco Giants, September 1999.
The Giants were playing the Phils that day. Lou took exception to my Phillies hat, and subjected it, and me, to a certain amount of good-natured abuse before allowing a picture.
|Homer, Atlanta Braves, July 2000.
There's a lot going on in this picture. First of all, the 30 sign is for a friend's birthday. Second, Homer looks suspiciously like Mr. Met, who I think predates him. Finally, Homer's head was noticeably smaller than the week before, and in Chris Lee's picture. We thought maybe this was his hot-weather head, or his regular one was at the cleaner's.
|Rally, Atlanta Braves, July 2000.
And another thing about the Braves' mascots: they made no appearances during the game. None. We got these pictures during the pre-game cheesy mallpark singing dancing cartoon character Turner media empire everything but baseball extravaganza.
|Mr. Met, New York Mets, July 2000.
Security around Mr. Met is pretty tight--the photo that didn't come out was of me standing by a gate, crestfallen, as Mr. Met was whisked away to the field. We caught up with him later though.
|The Pirate Parrot, Pittsburgh Pirates, July 2001.
Another mascot missing from my collection for too long... and another mascot who could stand a shot of Febreze.
|The Racing Pierogies, Pittsburgh Pirates, July 2001.
I realize this one walks a thin line between real sports mascots and crass commercialism. But I think they're fun, and I figured a chance to pose with all four of them at once was relatively rare.
|Screech, Washington Nationals, June 2005.
I was really hoping for a big red furry blog-type thing, but I will settle for yet another Washington eagle.
|Junction Jack, Houston Astros, September 2006.
Seriously, why a rabbit?
|Mr. Redlegs, Cincinnati Reds, July 2008.
Mr. Redlegs squirted Otis with that there water gun just after he snapped the picture.
|Gapper, Cincinnati Reds, July 2008.
I received a big red furry kiss, too.
1. It must be a SPORTS mascot. Amusement park characters and lame-o department store critters don't count.
2. The mascot must be wearing a complete costume of some kind--if you can see the performer's real head, it's no good.
(An exception would be made for the late great Max Patkin [R.I.P. 10/30/99] if you've got a photo with him.)
Do you have a picture of yourself with a sports mascot? E-mail it to me as a JPG or GIF file and I'll put it on the "other people's" page. Please use "Mascot Photos" as the subject line of your e-mail to prevent it from being flagged as spam.