How much do mlb mascots make? Few jobs in professional sports are more exciting than being an MLB mascot. The job responsibilities include pouring popcorn on opposing fans, dancing on top of seats, and driving an ATV around the outfield. It’s safe to say that being a mascot is a dream gig for sports fans.
According to totalsportal.com, an MLB mascot can make anywhere from $450 to $2000 per game.
Wally the Green Monster from the Boston Red Sox has the highest per-game salary at $2,000. This translates to an annual salary of $250,000. Not a bad wage to take pictures with children and boo the opposition.
The mascots in the MLB are responsible for representing the team and getting the home crowds energized. They are often seen on the field performing shows and interacting with fans in the stands. Some of the most famous mascots in the majors are the Phillie Phanatic, Mr. Met, and Slugerrr of the Kansas City Royals.
While the life of an MLB mascot sounds like a dream, the job is physically demanding. Potential mascots must be physically fit, as well as able to withstand the warmth and weight of the costume for long periods.
A mascot must also be able to express the personality and identity of the brand or sports team through movement and dance or stunts. The modern professional mascot performs backflips, spins, and cartwheels. Athleticism is a must.
MLB mascots earn less than mascots in the NBA
The highest-paid mascot in the four major American sports is the Denver Nuggets mascot, Rocky the Mountain Lion. He reportedly earns as much as $625,000 a year, with Harry the Hawk of the Atlanta Hawks ranked second with a salary of $600,000.
In the NFL, Rowdy (Dallas Cowboys) and Pat Patriot (New England Patriots) are the highest-paid mascots in the NFL, earning $50 per hour or $65,000 per year. In the NHL, the Montreal Canadiens’ Youppi! makes upwards of $1,000 per appearance.
How Mascot Salaries Stack Up
If you’re a huge sports fan or just love to entertain, being a pro sports team mascot could be your dream gig — and it can actually pay well too. Mascots usually start out working in the minor leagues, where they earn a starting salary of about $25,000, but once you make it to the ranks of a mascot for an NFL, NBA, MLB or NHL franchise, the average salary shoots up to about $60,000, according to ESPN.
An elite group of mascots even bring in as much as six figures as full-time, salaried employees, which they earn from appearing at every home game (typically 41 regular-season NBA or NHL games, or 81 regular-season MLB games — though there will only be 60 MLB games total this year) in addition to appearing at events. Others can make big bucks by working as contract employees, earning money from their performances at games as well as outside appearances.
Paws – Detroit Tigers – $125 per hour
Paws has been the official brand ambassador of the Detroit Tigers since 1995. For the last 18 years he has owned this coveted title and has won the hearts of many fans and corporate organizations alike. Paws is occasionally hired for office holiday parties, birthdays and community events, but prefers cheering on his home team above all else.
His appearance fee is determined by the length of time requested, driving distance and the type of event. The cost of his presence starts at a rather reasonable $125 per hour. An additional $0.59 per mile is charged for events in excess of 60 miles from his residence of Comerica Park.
Bernie Brewer – Milwaukee Brewers – $200 per hour
Milwaukee’s moustachioed mascot, Bernie Brewer takes home a minimum of $200 per hour for private events. Interestingly, his high price tag hasn’t dampened demand for the popular mascot who is most fondly remembered for sliding down from his perch into a giant beer mug following Brewers victories.
These days, Bernie is a little less of a party animal, now sliding down onto a giant home plate after Brewers home runs – and his liver thanks him for it. Bernie was created in 1970 but it was not until he reappeared from a 9-year hiatus in 1993 (the Brewers deny that he was in rehab, but we know better) that he became a popular figure throughout North America. The mascot is available for public functions courtesy of the Brewers Corporate Affairs department.
Billy the Marlin – Miami Marlins – $250-$300 per hour
Billy made his debut appearance some 20 years ago and has never disappointed his owners since then. The 8-foot-tall, 250 pound mascot who bills himself as a master of pantomime is revered for his unique traits that endear him to many baseball lovers. He has many fish-like characteristics with massive fins protruding from his back and a sharp, pointed mouth. Billy is available for hourly appearances at parades, birthdays, commercial events and family reunions for $300 per hour. Not a bad deal considering marlin can go for around $16 a pound.
Slider ($350 per hour)
Nobody’s really sure what Slider is supposed to be, or what relation he has to the Cleveland Indians baseball club, but hey, beauty is only skin deep, right? In any case, with his fuscia fur, conspicuous yellow nose and shaggy eyebrows, Slider is an eye-catching mascot if there ever was one.
The six-foot-tall creature is well-known for his hilarious skits and choreographed dances as well as a famous incident in which he fell off a six-foot outfield wall and tore a knee ligament. Slider is very involved in community events and is often spotted making appearances in and around Cleveland. He pockets an average of $350 per hour which is a small price considering he was inducted into the Mascot Hall of Fame in 2008.
Fredbird – St. Louis Cardinals – $350 per hour
Fredbird’s brilliant career started in 1979 when the St. Louis Cardinals chose him to carry the team flag and entertain fans before and after home games. The 6 foot 3 inch red bird is known for his signature beak which he routinely uses to peck at fans who aren’t into the game.
Fredbird is also a local tv star, appearing on the weekly Cardinals Kids Club show. Although he spends the bulk of his time at Busch Stadium, he’s often available for outdoor events. His appearance fees are $150 for 30 minutes, $350 for 1 hour and $600 for two hours. The fee doubles up if he has to fly more than 50 miles from St. Louis.
Baxter – Arizona Diamondbacks – $400 per hour
Undoubtedly one of the scarier mascots on this list, D. Baxter the Bobcat has nevertheless managed to win over his fans with his unique looks and crazy antics since joining the team in 2000.
When not busy taking care of his game-day responsibilities, the 6-foot-tall bobcat is out and about gracing public events in different parts of the country. He regularly signs autographs and poses for photos much to the delight (and sometimes terror) of young kids. One must fork out a minimum of $400 per hour to have Baxter show up for a private occasion.
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