For week three of the Guide To Recognizing series of unsolicited MiLB team mascot information we jump back across the continental United States to the Northwest League of Professional Baseball, a Short-Season A classification minor league. The league is a descendant of the old Western International League, with memorable teams such as the Victoria Athletics, the Lewiston Black Chinese Indians and the Oregon Trail Dysentery Havers. You don’t want to know about their mascot, trust me.
If you’ve read the rundown of the Pioneer and Appalachian Leagues, you won’t need my disclaimer about how I’m a normal person who just happens to think mascots are stupid and fun. But in the interest of filling up these introductory paragraphs, here goes: I am a lecherous creep, but I try to keep that separated from my love of baseball. Think of it like refusing to cheer for a WWE Diva. I love pro wrestling and I love strippers, but I don’t want to have to look at them at the same time, you know?
Please move right along and click through to read about what people in Washington are doing when you aren’t looking.
I find it extremely important to begin any discussion of the Northwest League with the Everett AquaSox and their mascot duo Frank and Webbly. Quick, guess which one is Frank. Did you guess the gangster frog?
I clicked the “about” link on the Everett AquaSox homepage in hopes of finding out what the hell an “AquaSock” was, but minor league baseball pages are the worst, and I mean sure, now I know where I can send all my Everett player fan mail, but I’m left ignorant and assuming the team is named after those little shoes I got made fun of for wearing at Cape Cod. I have very sensitive feet and little to no knowledge of what lurks at the bottom of a f**king terminal moraine, and frankly I don’t appreciate this team drawing attention to my stupid shoes.
And speaking of franks, what’s with the Mad Magazine-ass looking mouth on Frank? Uncomfortable smiles like that belong on Big Johnson t-shirts, not on food.
Okay, so I don’t really know what this extra mascot’s deal is, nor do I know any living child who can suspend disbelief enough to enjoy a puppet walking around in a Team Rocket-quality invisible suit, but I’m pretty sure if I stare at it much longer I’m going to start learning about Christianity.
I love that Pop Fly is an option for your Everett AquaSox-related appearance. Your kid wouldn’t enjoy a six-foot tall frog? Okay, how about a radical wiener? No? Oh, I know, how about Bert from Sesame Street’s boring older brother who loves minor league baseball and wanders around in a house with legs that absolutely does not have a man inside it?
The mascot for Eugene, Oregeon, is not named “Eugene.” I’m not even sure what to do with that. I feel sort of empty inside. Maybe they have a chef mascot named “Emerald?” No, they have a bright green bear with blue pubes named Sluggo. Sluggo loves Emeralds baseball, but he also loves crushing Mr. Bill and being Nancy from the comic strip “Nancy’s” gay best friend.
His bio doesn’t help. It starts with Sluggo being born and glosses over everything until he finds an abandoned pair of binoculars in the forest and starts using them to spy on the Eugene Emeralds. He wants to play baseball, but feels excluded because none of them are bright green. So he decides to become their mascot instead, and he repeats this story “anytime he meets new people at the ballpark.” Oh, so I guess when he high fived me and covered his mouth with both hands I was supposed to know all that shit about the binoculars and the forest.
Oh well, nothing says “retarded” quite like “Eugene.”
Ah, now here’s something relatively straightforward. The team name is the “Yakima Bears,” so the mascot is an enormously fat lesbian cowboy with a tiny bat. Boomer, pictured here with a bear (right), has been entertaining white people and a decreasing number of Native Americans in South Central Washington for maybe twenty years.
Bears fans can find Boomer entertaining the fans at Yakima County Stadium and providing some of the worst analysis you could imagine on CBS Sports’ The NFL Today. I mean, I get that a baseball-themed plush bear might not be the best person to ask about football, but I expect better quotes than “the question is do they have a conscience? I don’t know what part of the brain controls that part” from even the most underdeveloped caniforms.
Anyway, “The Yakima Bears have a bear mascot” isn’t really ripe with jokes, so we’re going to move on to the next team, who I’m sure will have something crazy.
So we move on to the Vancouver Canadians, who have a … uh, they have a bear. They have a bear named “Bob Brown Bear,” because this team was named by a five-year old girl in kindergarten who had to come up with a f**king story about bears on the fly. I like that he isn’t just “Bob Bear,” but Bob Brown Bear, like the owner of the Vancouver Canadians was like “our mascot is a bear, what should his name be,” and his wife goes, “how about Bob Bear,” and he’s like “yeah but then how are they gonna know what color he is.”
Also, the name “Canadians” is shaking me. As a hockey fan, I’m conditioned to spell it “Canadiens” without even considering whether the team plays in Normal Canada or weird French Canadian Canada. But this brings up further questions, like whether or not there’s a team somewhere in British Columbia named the “Maple Leaves,” and everything I’ve come to learn about the Canadian grasp of language has been a lie.
Also (also), how awful is that logo? Like the owner of the Vancouver Canadians was like “here’s our logo, it’s a C,” and his wife is all, “for what,” and he explains “because Canada starts with C.” And then she suggests that he spruce it up a little bit, and he’s like “how about I put a bunch of bears in the logo,” and she suggests a baseball, and he’ll do that as long as he can hang an apostrophe S on the side.