Mascots have been around since 1880, starting in France when the French word "mascotte" was used to mean talisman or good luck charm. In the good ol' U.S.A., we shortened it to "mascot." Although, a more accurate word would be whatever word has the definition of; big furry things that are distracting and are best when they leave you alone. Sadly, no such word exists but maybe the rap community will, one day, come up with one.
When coming up with this list, each entrant had to satisfy certain criteria. They had to be grotesque and make as little sense as possible in terms of the team or event they are affiliated with. That's why there's no "Otto, the Orange" for Syracuse University. Yeah, he's weird but he's not ugly and he is an orange which makes sense when your team is "The Orange." Ditto for the Phillie Phantic because I'm a big Phillies fan and an even bigger fan of alliteration. Now, with that out of the way, please enjoy the top ten worst mascots of all time.
10 Mr. Met (New York Mets)
This looks more like someone suffering from encephalitis then someone who makes you want to cheer. Mr. Met came about in 1963 and is believed to be the first Major League mascot to exist in humanoid form. Plus, he was the first Mets bobblehead doll. He even got a live girlfriend, Mrs. Met, in 1975. Then nature took its course and they were blessed with three little baseballs or children.
In 1976, the Metropolitans finally did the right thing and got rid of giant baseball head, but he came back in 1994 for no good reason. Maybe he had incriminating photos of manager Dallas Green. Sadly, Mr. Met is thriving. In 2007, he was even elected into the Mascot Hall of Fame even though Kiss still hasn't been inducted.
9 Dodger Big Headed Thing (Los Angeles Dodgers)
8 Izzy (1996 Atlanta Olympics)
7 Chief Noc-A-Homa / Chief Wahoo (Atlanta Braves, Cleveland Indians)
Ah, the blatantly racist mascots. What better way to recognize the race you pretend to admire then by having them being a gross caricature? Shockingly, the Washington Redskins don't have an official mascot. In light of the racial insensitivity of their current administration, it's hard to believe that they would throw away such a great opportunity to offend.
6 Crazy Crab (San Francisco Giants, 1984)
San Francisco was the host for the acid generation in the late '60's and who's to say that a future San Francisco Giants promotions executive wasn't one of the flower children imbibing the brown acid? It would certainly explain how anyone would think this thing would be a proper representation for your team. It's a crab! Who doesn't love crabs? Just like the things you try not to step on when you're at the beach.
5 Dandy (New York Yankees, 1979-1981)
The New York Yankees are all about tradition. Every year is some kind of an anniversary. There's 27 world championships, 40 pennants, 44 players in the Hall of Fame and one mascot: Dandy.
Dandy was created after the Yankees heard that the Phillie Phanatic grossed over two million in revenue annually. Sure, two million doesn't even get you a crappy middle reliever these days, but back in '79 it was real money. Dandy was created by Wayde Harrison and his wife, Bonnie Erickson, both experienced puppeteers who worked with The Muppets. They came up with the basic design and had it approved by Yankee owner, George Steinbrenner.
4 Mad Ant (Fort Wayne Mad Ants - NBDL)
3 Steely McBeam (Pittsburgh Steelers, 2007)
2 Pierre the Pelican (New Orleans Pelicans)
1 Youppi! (Montreal Canadiens)
From the same people who designed Dandy, Youppi! was all about fun. The exclamation point after his name shows you that. He tops this list because Youppi! was the first mascot to switch sports. He was originally the mascot for baseball's Montreal Expos and when they fled town, he became the mascot for the NHL's Montreal Canadiens leading fans from two different sports to ask the question, what the hell is that?
He was also the first mascot to be thrown out of a Major League baseball game on August 23rd, 1989, because Dodger manager, Tommy Lasorda, complained that Youppi! was making too much noise. When beloved former Montreal catcher, Gary Carter, passed away in 2012, Youppi! once again donned an Expos jersey. There could be no higher tribute, although it would've been nice on that day of mourning if Youppi! exchanged his "!" for a more respectful "." or ":" but that's all hindsight.
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