Phillie Phanatic vs Orbit: The World Series of MLB’s greatest mascots 

A battle to end all battles

October 26th, 2022

The battle begins Friday: Two of the best in MLB will square off inside Houston’s Minute Maid Park.

One will be sporting the red and white colors of the great city of Philadelphia, while the other will be donning the Astros’ orange and navy. Both have had great moments during the 2022 season and, of course, during their respective franchise’s histories.

• World Series Game 1, presented by Capital One: Friday. 8 p.m. ET/7 CT on FOX

Fans flock to the park to see them. Their performances have become legendary in all baseball circles.

They’re furry. They’re gree — oh, wait, you thought we were talking about the Phillies vs the Astros? No, the real, most thrilling matchup during this World Series will be the Phillie Phanatic taking on Orbit.

Yes, two of the best mascots in baseball will square up starting Friday. Here’s a head-to-head rundown.

The Phillie Phanatic
Height: 6-foot-6
Weight: 300 pounds (mostly fat)
Birthplace: Galapagos Islands
Hobbies: Eating, tormenting people
Favorite Song: Motown Philly

The Galapagos bird/whatever it is, is widely considered one of the greatest mascots in any sport and has been creating on-field mayhem since the late 1970s — silly-stringing broadcasters, scaring small dogs and firing hot dogs into the Citizens Bank Ballpark crowd.

The Phanatic is a charter member of the Mascot Hall of Fame and, along with The San Diego Chicken, Youppi! and The Oriole Bird, is one of four mascots on display at the National Baseball Hall of Fame.

But where the furry, green monster could come up big during World Series play is with its ability to distract/be incredibly annoying to opposing teams. Notable players like Noah Syndergaard and Jose Bautista have had tussles with the Phanatic in the past, and Philadelphia’s mascot even famously made former Dodgers manager Tommy Lasorda completely lose his mind. We’re not sure if cool-and-collected Dusty Baker would lose his composure like the short-tempered Lasorda — but what if the Phanatic steals Dusty’s box of toothpicks? Can Dusty manage without his toothpicks?

Orbit
Height: Not listed
Weight: “A lot less in space,” but likely also 300 pounds and likely also mostly fat
Birthplace: Foul Territory of the Grand Slam Galaxy
Hobbies: Hugs, tormenting people
Favorite Movie: Men in Black

Orbit hasn’t been around in the mascot game as long as the Phanatic, but the giant-headed alien has made his presence very known over the last 10 years. He won GameOp.com’s Mascot of the Year award in 2014 and had the honor of being the sole mascot to represent Major League Baseball in the Japan Series that same fall. A professional writer once even penned a love letter to him, saying:

“I have a crush on Orbit. The guy with the big eyeballs who makes his stomach roll the way my cousin Bill used to do and swings his behind like one gigantic broom at work.”

Like the Phanatic, Orbit can be a disruption to opposing players. In fact, the Astros’ mascot might be even better at it.

He’s terrified All-Star pitchers, he’s stared down opposing hurlers from behind home plate and he completely humiliated the greatest player in baseball. Could he get under Syndergaard’s skin during the Series? It seems like it might be worth a try.

Final Thoughts
The two furry titans have only met a few times over the last decade — including one instance when longtime Astros on-field reporter Julia Morales was kidnapped by the Phanatic. What kind of chaos will they bring to baseball’s grandest stage? We’ll find out this weekend.

Claude Hubert, the man who played Youppi! — one of the most disruptively brilliant mascots of all time — did give his take on who might be the better watch in an email.

“I think that Phanatic interacts more with the people vs. Orbit, who is more with his little numbers on the field,” Hubert wrote. “They remind me a lot of Youppi! for all these things. The interactions with the people and the numbers.”

Who is his money on?

“I don’t have a preference but for a battle, I think the Phanatic would win only because he’s been there longer.”