What is a Phillie Baseball ? A history of Phillie Phanatic’s rise as a Philadelphia sports icon

What is a phillie baseball ? Did you know that the Philadelphia Phillies are the longest, continuous, one name, one city franchise in all of sports? It’s true. But you’re probably wondering what exactly a Phillie is anyway? And where did it come from?

You see, way back in 1883 when the Phillies were founded, it was common to call other teams by where they were from. Teams didn’t have names or mascots as they do today.

Teams were referred to as “the Boston’s” or “the New York’s,” etc. But “the Philadelphia’s” didn’t really roll off the tongue. Newspapers began shortening the name to “the Phillies” to save space in the headlines.

The Phillies name first appeared in the Inquirer in 1883. The team quickly adopted the new, shorter nickname and the rest is history.

what is a phillie baseball

How they came to be called the Phillies

If you peruse Baseball Reference long enough, you might stumble onto the Phillies’ franchise page.

The Phillies played their inaugural season in the National League in 1883, but according to the site they were known as the Quakers through ’89. It is interesting then that the Phillies are sometimes called the “oldest, continuous, one-name, one-city franchise” in baseball.

Well, a team called the Philadelphia Quakers joined the National Association in 1873. The league, however, folded in ’75. The NL formed a year later, but the National Association’s Philadelphia A’s joined it. The A’s, however, got booted from the NL after refusing to take a road trip late in the season. The NL eventually wanted to re-establish itself in Philadelphia, so it disbanded the Worcester (Mass.) Brown Stockings (also known as the Ruby Legs) and formed a new franchise in Philadelphia in ’83.

Former Phillies vice president of communications Larry Shenk’s research staff (OK, the Baron is a one-man show) flipped through “The Philadelphia Phillies,” a book written by Fred Leib and Stan Baumgartner and published in 1953. (It was the only book in the Phillies’ PR office when Shenk joined the organization in ’63.) In the book, Leib and Baumgartner wrote, “By general consent, the new team (1883) came to be known as the Phillies, one of the most natural and spontaneous of all big league nicknames. It was easily understood, as any oaf could recognize a Phillie to be a player from Philadelphia. However, the nickname of the old National Association Philadelphias — the Quakers — persisted, and for years a number of Philadelphia dailies referred to the new ball team as the Quakers.”

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“Phillies: An Extraordinary Tradition” is the official history book of the franchise. In it, Bob Warrington confirmed that original owner Al Reach named the franchise the Phillies because “it tells you who we are and where we are from.”

What is the Phillie Phanatic

PHILADELPHIA — The Phillie Phanatic is no doubt a staple mascot solidified in Philadelphia sports history. He can be found at any Phillies baseball game, hyping up the crowd, hexing the opposing team and dancing with fans.

Chairman of the Phillies, Bill Giles, was reportedly among the Phanatic’s originators.

However, in the beginning, the Phillies didn’t own the trademark to the Phanatic. As he gained popularity, the Phillies paid $215,000 to buy the rights to use his image in perpetuity from the original creators, Harris/Erickson Ic.

Bonnie Harrison and Wayde Erickson, who had ties to the Muppets, created the Phanatic’s character design and backstory, according to Groovy History. In that backstory, the Phanatic is a flightless bird from the Galapagos Islands.

The Phanatic performs skits before and during the early innings of Phillies games. In later innings, fans can expect to find the Phanatic atop the Phillies dugout hexing opposing players.

He’ll also dance with fans or dump giant tubes of popcorn over opposing fans, usually departing after the 8th inning.

As for the man behind the mascot, the Phanatic was originally played by Dave Raymond until his retirement in 1994. Today, the mascot is primarily played by Tom Burgoyne and other Phillies employees, according to Baseball Reference.

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In 2018, Harris/Erickson contacted the Phillies, claiming they had the right to terminate the 1984 agreement and regain control of the extremely valuable Phanatic, making him a “free agent,” according to Baseball Reference.

In response, the Phillies sued the firm in the United States District Court of the Southern District of New York, stating that the company’s claim was legally baseless as it had signed away its rights in full knowledge and had already been paid.

As a result, the Phanatic debuted a slightly changed style, with a lighter green coloring, a lack of fur on his hands and more blue around his eyes. He also lost a bit of weight, maybe due to the stress of the train, and formed a new blue tail.

Despite the legal battle, the Phanatic has continued to bring plenty of laughs over the years.

With no fans in the stands during the COVID-19 pandemic, he interacted with cardboard cutouts depicting absent fans.

Sometimes the Phanatic’s antics have proven too much. He was involved in a public fight with Tommy Lasorda, who attacked him on the field as the Phanatic mocked him, according to Dodger Blue.

The Dodgers faced the Phillies at Veterans Stadium on Aug. 28, 1988, when Lasorda, the former Los Angeles manager, grew tired over the Phanatic’s bit of dressing a dummy in his jersey.

According to MLB.com, Lasorda later said that he wore only three uniforms in his life: a Boy Scout uniform, a U.S. Army uniform and a Dodgers uniform and that he didn’t want anyone degrading them.

During the 1988 game, Lasorda stormed out of the dugout and a tug-of-war over the dressed dummy ensued, where Lasorda ended up with the dummy doll. He then used it to repeatedly hit the Phanatic.

It wasn’t the only time the two would feud, but they would make amends in the end.

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The Phanatic was introduced to bring more fans into the stands, and that’s exactly what he did. He replaced older mascots “Philadelphia Phil” and “Philadelphia Phillis,” a pair of siblings dressed to invoke the city’s revolutionary spirit from 1776.

what is a phillie baseball

What is the Phillies’ mascot? A history of Phillie Phanatic’s rise as a Philadelphia sports icon

The Phillies won nearly 60 percent of their games in the friendly confines of Citizens Bank Park in the regular season. They have since kept the good times rolling in the postseason, winning each of their five home playoff games en route to yet another World Series appearance.

It has been exciting times in the City of Brotherly Love. And nothing encapsulates that excitement more than a certain furry-faced folk hero of sorts in the city: Phillie Phanatic.

The neon-green-tinted mascot has become a part of the city’s furniture over the years, popping up all along the stadium concourse to help bring the atmosphere to life.

And they played a central role in the post-game celebrations following Philadelphia’s Game 5 win over San Diego, making the trek to the pitcher’s mound before waving a cherry-red flag emblazoned with the words “National League Champions” on it.

What is the Phillies’ mascot?

They’re unlike any other mascot in the game. With a menacing snout, a grass-like mane and a bright blue tail, Phillie Phanatic is certainly a feast for sore eyes.

“I think I wanted to make a shape that was going to have its own sort of character,” Erickson told WBUR’s Noam Osband in 2019. “So that if you put a performer or a human being in it, it was going to be funny just because of the way it moved.”

Phillie Phanatic was first unveiled to the public on April 25, 1978. It was a fairly unassuming debut, namely because no one announced that the Phils were introducing a new mascot beforehand.

But it was a successful one, full of laughs and cheers. And that set the stage for a burgeoning passion for the woolly behemoth, one that still shines through some 44 years later.

Above is information what is a phillie baseball.   Hopefully, through the above content, you have a more detailed understanding of what is a phillie baseball .Thank you for reading our post.

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