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Worst Mascot in Baseball? You Betcha

Dan Steinberg is on vacation. Despite his massive photo above, this was not written by him. It was written by the fine optimist over at The Nationals Enquirer, which you must read. Other guest bloggers will check in later today, and all week. Anyhow, TNE writes below, and please provide extra comments to make him feel at home. Oh, and for more on baseball mascots, be sure to check out Home Run Derby's Mascot Bracket. Yes, Screech is a bottom seed.

Our Screech. Sigh. Worst mascot in baseball? Easy. Probably wouldn't be much of a stretch to argue that he's among the worst mascots in professional sports. This afternoon, The Nationals Enquirer breaks down the five worst mascots in baseball, then with the precision of a surgeon, explains why Screech is by far the worst of the bunch.

5. Billy the Marlin (Florida Marlins): The Florida Marlins will tell you he's a jokester, "an absolute master of pantomime", a "natural-born clown/comic/mimic and good-natured prankster (always in good taste);" his biggest "funny" is to squirt opposing players with a squirt gun. But let's face it, Billy the Marlin is a d-bag, and what the Florida Marlins won't tell you is that he has a nasty gambling habit (he even bets on baseball -- but never on the Marlins, *wink* *wink*).

But Screech is worse: he isn't a master of pantomime, he's not a natural born clown/comic/mimic, nor is he a good-natured prankster. He just gyrates sometimes and flops around (sort of like the team he represents). He's just Screech, and he's awful.

4. The Phanatic (Philadelphia Phillies): Phun? Absolutely not. How's this from his 'official' profile: "Riding around on his all-terrain vehicle before the game, the Phanatic is at his mischievous best...In the crowd - watch out! - the Phanatic may clumsily spill a tub of popcorn, steal your girlfriend, buff a bald head or just sit down and watch the game with you - from your lap! Hungry? Well, put on your glove because the Phanatic likes to shoot cooked hot dogs into the crowd with his four foot long Hot Dog Launcher..."

(Toni L. Sandys - TWP)

So let's make sure I have this straight...he'll steal my girlfriend (or, in my case, wife), knock over my popcorn and shoot hot dogs at me!?

Well -- Screech doesn't ride around on an ATV but he'd probably knock over your beer (not your popcorn) if he had the chance. He isn't armed with a four foot Hot Dog Launcher, but if he was, he'd be shooting UNCOOKED hotdogs into the crowd, because that's how they roll at RFK. He's just Screech, and he's awful.

3. The Rally Monkey (The Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim): Out in Anaheim...ehh...Los Angeles or whatever, fans bang Thunderstix when they get excited. Then the little monkey appears on the JumboTron and hops up and down and the fans bang their Thunderstix even louder. It's awesome.

Screech, on the other hand, can't even hop up and down; but sometimes he sort-of dances in place. He's just useless.

2. Wally The Green Monster (Boston Red Sox): As far as baseball fans go, the only thing worse than a Red Sox fan is a Yankee fan. But as far as baseball mascots go, it's really hard to get much worse than Wally the Green Monster. All you really need to know about Wally is that he has a blog. As you've probably heard, bloggers are among the lowest of life forms and, in general, live in their parents' basements.

As far as we know, Screech doesn't have a blog -- and these days, everybody has one -- so that makes him lower than the lowest of life forms.

Slider. Weird.

1. Slider (Cleveland Indians): You really have to see it to believe it, but this really is the most ill-conceived of all the mascots in baseball. Just look at him. Close your eyes, and you can almost imagine the meeting between the suits from MLB and the Indians' PR staff where they decided to invent a mascot so ridiculous it obliterated all memory of the controversial (if not blatantly racist) Chief Wahoo.

Screech, on the other hand, is most likely the half-baked product of a meeting of some suits from MLB scrambling to invent a mascot when the team moved from Washington from Montreal. And now we're stuck with him. Just for the record, we would've taken Youppi with open arms - Canadian accent and all.

By Dan Steinberg  |  July 20, 2007; 11:59 AM ET
Categories:  MLB , Nats  
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