While the 2020 MLB season will be weird, the Philadelphia Phillies can effectively save their season by bringing back the ‘real’ Phillie Phanatic once and for all.
Will the Philadelphia Phillies play baseball this summer? Honestly, beats me.
Maybe the season starts on the Fourth of July, maybe the team plays in a ‘baseball bubble‘, maybe the MLB takes a page out of Bryce Harper‘s (Instagram) playbook and plays an abbreviated season concluding with a college-style tournament.
I really hope things do work out in a way that’s beneficial for everyone – the players, the teams, and the fans alike – but honestly, that’s a bit above my, and even Harper’s, pay grade.
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However, there is one thing the Phillies could do right now, regardless of when the season opens up, to immediately energize the fanbase and effectively save the season without throwing out a single pitch: Bring back the ‘real’ Phillie Phanatic.
It’s just that simple. Pay whatever money Harrison/Erickson want for a lifetime contract for the Phanatic and watch fans the world over rejoice.
I mean, think about it, imagine just how much free publicity such a move would garner in the form of news stories, blog posts (hey), and internet shoutouts. Heck, the team could even roll out a ton of ‘Phanatic reunion’ merch that would surely sell incredibly well.
But wait, there’s more.
As you’ve probably seen ad nauseam, the corporate world is kind of obsessed with generating social media buzz with Tik Toks, Zoom ‘concerts’ and whatever other gimmicky viral offerings they can cook up to bring new eyes to their brand.
The Phanatic is sort of the OG mascot hypeman in the world of sports and while it would be a tad awkward to watch him ‘Flip a switch‘ it’s hard to argue such a video wouldn’t garner tens of millions of social interactions.
You know what? Having the new not-Phanatic Phanatic ‘flip a switch’ to reveal the original Phanatic could quite possibly go down as one of the best video ideas of all time. You’re welcome.
As things presently stand, the Phillies are not particularly popular. Sure, the team’s decision to retain their work staff is beyond respectable but when people are writing pieces like ‘Why Philly Fans Should Boo The ‘New’ Phillie Phanatic‘ you know you have a problem. While the team could conceivably win their lawsuit for the Phanatic’s rights, is it really worth the risk?
John Oliver has openly stated that he will do everything in his power to buy the Phanatic if he hits the open market and if his collection of Wax Presidents is of any indication, he is without a doubt willing to do just about anything to generate his own headline-grabbing social power play.
Now I love John Oliver as much as the next guy but that joke’s punchline would be absolutely tragic for the City of Brotherly Love.
Like it or not, the 2020 MLB season is going to be weird. Even if things go best-case scenario, the Philadelphia Phillies, and every other team, are going to be navigating uncharted waters for this and maybe even next season. That’s out of their control. What is in the Phillies control, however, is making a deal to restore the Phillie Phanatic to his former glory. If the team wants to generate some free publicity, make fans the world over happy, and keep their beloved mascot out of the hands of John Oliver, I can’t think of a better investment than securing his (its?) rights once and for all.