THE BIGGEST STAR of the Phillies' 91-loss season? The Phanatic, of course. We asked the man who knows him best—Tom Burgoyne, the team's entertainment representative (wink) and author of the new leadership book Pheel the Love—to take us through the Phanatic's typical routine for a 7 p.m. start time.
The Phanatic is a rare, flightless bird who lives at the ballpark, and because he's a night, um, owl, he sleeps in.
He may have come from the Galápagos Islands, but after 39 years in the City of Brotherly Love the Phanatic is all Philly. Proof: His breakfast choice is a scrapple (don't ask), egg and cheese sandwich. All other meals? Cheesesteaks.
Reviews scouting reports of the night's umpires. "Country" Joe West is behind the plate, so the Phanatic will need his banjo.
Gas up the ATV and load the nitrogen-powered hot dog launcher. Remember not to shoot the foil-wrapped dogs out of the stadium; doing so once led to a bomb scare when a fan found them outside and put them on a lamppost. The dogs were detonated.
Get fired up by watching 1988 encounter with his archenemy: Tommy Lasorda.
Another loss. The stadium is empty. The Phanatic pops in the 2008 World Series highlight film, then drifts off to sleep with Harry Kalas's call of the final out dancing through his overstuffed green head.
THEY SAID IT
"HE CAN TAKE RELIEF OVER THERE."
Golf Channel analyst, commenting on Brooks Koepka's opening drive last Saturday at the Ryder Cup, which came to rest against a stand of portable lavatories.
SIGN OF THE APOCALYPSE
ESPN analyst Mack Brown walked out of the booth with about 10 minutes left while calling the BYU-Toledo game so he could catch a flight.