All excited are you over that news conference the Dodgers have called this morning to announce their new mascot? What, they have something else on their agenda today?
Jeez, they are so falling behind the times. The Chicago Cubs, those unquestioned cutting-edge experts on winning baseball, introduced “Clark the Bear” as their new mascot this week. He’s all cuddly and everything, naturally.
The Dodgers, of course, have no need for an official mascot, already having Juan Uribe.
The idea of a mascot for a major league team in a cosmopolitan city seems absurd, but Chicago does like to think of itself that way. I mean, the cosmopolitan part. But guess when you’ve spent over 100 years failing to win a title, what’s one more little indignation?
Now maybe you think mascots are swell for minor league teams stuck in some podunk town where they’re still celebrating the arrival of running water, but a little beneath an MLB team. Unless, of course, you’re a chicken in San Diego.
But the cold, almost unimaginable truth is, every team in baseball has one but three – the Dodgers, Angels and Yankees.
Team mascots have come and gone over the years -- RIP, Charlie-O the Mule and Chief Noc-A-Homa -- but mostly they’ve managed to survive.
You can roll your eyes at the Miami’s Billy the Marlin or Houston’s Orbit and write it off as the cost of doing business in a smaller market. But proud, traditional baseball franchises have them too; the Boston Red Sox have Wally the Green Monster and the St. Louis Cardinals claim Fredbird.
Could this epidemic from the bush leagues actually make it to Dodger Stadium, to our own hallowed baseball grounds? Well, remember team President Stan Kasten held the same title twice with other clubs, leaving behind the Homer the Brave in Atlanta and the running Presidents in Washington, D.C. And marketing guru Lon Rosen – the man who thinks any stadium music is good if it’s absolutely blaring -- is the man who produced “The Magic Hour.”
Anything is possible. You may think the Dodgers are too classy to ever delve into such carnival shenanigans, but this is the team that used to have a guy lip sync that horrific Journey song in the seventh inning stretch and has attractive women with microphones trying to rev up the crowd before games with rah-rah stuff.
The Dodgers and Yankees seem way too classy to resort to a gimmick. Maybe the Angels too, though they once had song girls/cheerleaders performing on top of the dugouts between innings.
“Dodgers” would be kinda a tough thing to play off of for a mascot, anyway. We don’t exactly have trolley cars. We could have Wesley Snipes dodging taxes, but he played for the Indians.
And besides, who wouldn’t want to hug Uribe?Copyright © 2015, Los Angeles Times