The Atlanta Braves unveiled their new mascot over the weekend, and it looks quite similar to the best mascot in baseball, the Phillies Phanatic.
The Phillies Phanatic is arguably the best mascot in all of American sports and easily one of the best in baseball. Other teams certainly recognize that, and at least one is trying to find their own Phanatic.
The Atlanta Braves unveiled their new mascot Saturday at ChopFest, essentially the pre-spring training hype party for the team. They had to replace Homer, the second incarnation of Mr. Met. It appears they like finding inspiration in other NL East teams:
As soon as Blooper was revealed, it’s hard to argue that he looks quite similar to our green friend in Philadelphia, but not all the way. Fans and writers pointed out that Blooper doesn’t quite stack up with the Phanatic:
"Okay, I’m just going to come out and say it: Blooper is a Phillie Phanatic ripoff. Blooper looks like a pasty Phanatic. Like the Phanatic got sick, lost a bunch of weight, and lost his color."
Some even saw inspiration from another MLB mascot, Orbit of the Houston Astros:
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In fairness, the Braves are handcuffed with what kind of mascot they can pick. They can’t go with anything specific to the Braves or Native Americans without potentially being offensive. This leaves them going with something generic, but what they came up with was a dumb-downed and frankly worse Phillie Phanatic.
I can only imagine what the board room meeting was like to try and determine a new mascot. After deciding to abandon the mascot many compare to Mr. Met, they looked elsewhere in the division to find something. The Phanatic has been around since 1978 and made games enjoyable for fans for 40 years now.
Why not go with something similar? Just change the color, make him drop a few pounds, get rid of the fur, and you have Blooper. Give him a dirt bike rather than a quad. He shoots noisemakers out of his ears rather than his nose.
I would call Blooper the Phanatic 2.0, but that would imply that he is better. Rather, he’s a knock-off you buy at the flea market for pennies on the dollar.