It may have been a poor season for the Philadelphia Phillies on the field in 2015. But once again, one performer down at Citizens Bank Park remained consistently excellent, just as he has during all 12 of the team’s seasons there, and just as he had for 26 prior seasons at Veteran’s Stadium.
That consistently excellent performer was named yesterday by the ABC network’s “Good Morning America” program as the best mascot in Major League Baseball. We’re talking about, of course, the Phillie Phanatic.
It’s nothing that Phillies fans couldn’t have told you, as the beloved Phanatic continued to put smiles on the faces of fans young and old, even during a 99-loss season.
The team’s biggest fan, the Phanatic was first seen at The Vet on April 25th, 1978 in a game against the Chicago Cubs after travelling in an unknown manner from his home in the Galapagos Islands off the coast of Ecuador.
Over the last 38 seasons since that first appearance, the Phanatic has grown to become a recognizable symbol of the team around the country and across the world, having been called “arguably the most recognizable mascot in all of sport.”
Whether wandering through the stands and interacting with the fans, or performing on the field while interacting with the players and umpires, the Phanatic has a unique style and a flair for showmanship, all wrapped in a fuzzy green package.
The Phanatic is one of just 10 pro sports mascots selected to the Mascots Hall of Fame, and is one of just three to have a display at the Baseball Hall of Fame. The Phanatic was selected by SI for Kids as the Best Mascot Ever.
In 2008, Forbes magazine reported that the Phillie Phanatic had finished at the top of the influential Davie-Brown Index as the #1 mascot in all of sports.
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“It’s not just about baseball sometimes, it’s about the kids and enjoying their experience at Citizens Bank Park. They have so much more to do, and the Phanatic is a part of that. The Phanatic travels all over the country: Minor League parks, other Major League parks. He also travels internationally — he’s been to Australia, Japan, Mexico, and everyone seems to love the antics.”
For those who don’t get to see the Phillie Phanatic perform very often, take a few minutes to enjoy the videos in this piece.