No matter where the New York Mets finish in the NL East standings, their mascot will be No. 1 this season.
Mr. Met, an iconic fellow with a giant baseball for a head who debuted 50 years ago, has been named America's top sports mascot by a marketing firm that surveyed fans. A story in Forbes magazine dishes on how the Marketing Arm's Davie-Brown Index determined that Mr. Met edged the Phillie Phanatic for the top spot, like he did in 2009. (No, it's not the "Dave Brown Index," as the New York Daily News originally reported, for I would have thrown out the results because of the mascots they omitted.)
The top 10 list excludes Canadian mascots, which means it doesn't have Youppi! — the former Montreal Expos sidekick who now works for the NHL's Canadiens — and there are no college teams as in previous seasons. Here's who they do have:
Mr. Met — New York Mets
Phillie Phanatic — Philadelphia Phillies
Benny the Bull — Chicago Bulls
San Diego Chicken — Formerly of the San Diego Padres
Wally the Green Monster — Boston Red Sox
Racing Sausages — Milwaukee Brewers
The Gorilla — Phoenix Suns
Billy the Marlin — Florida Marlins
Coyote — San Antonio Spurs
10 (tie). Racing Presidents — Washington Nationals
10 (tie). Rocky — Denver Nuggets
As the headline asked: Where's Youppi!?
There he is! But I meant on the list, which must have been compiled while forgetting Canada entirely. And that's not all. The Spurs' Coyote? That's not the real Coyote from Looney Tunes, you know. The Nuggets' Rocky? The only reason he made the list is because Dinger the Dinosaur of the Rockies refuses to wear pants. And where's the Mariner Moose, or the Pirate Parrot? Iceburg the Penguin is a movie star, for crying out loud! There's just no accounting for taste in mascots.
While the Phillie Phanatic would probably beat Mr. Met and everyone else on the list if there were a Mascot Olympics (which I would attend), Mr. Met winning is OK. He's understated, but enthusiastic at his job. He's raising a family and loves his cousins but still has time for his fans outside of the stadium. He represents the team well.
Hopefully he won't get a big head over this.