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Minor League Baseball

Arkansas Travelers aren’t playing possum with new nightmare fuel mascot (photo)


The Arkansas Travelers, the Double-A affiliate of the Los Angeles Angels, recently retired its longtime mascot Shelly. This created an opening for a new mascot.

Believing two is better than one, the Travelers came up with two new mascots. The first one, Ace, seems harmless enough, although he does strike an imposing figure, if the illustration is an accurate representation of the horse.

Meanwhile, the other new mascot, gives rise to an altogether different range of emotions, fear being one of those.

 Without further ado, allow me to introduce you to Otey the Swamp Possum, the brand-spanking-and-terrifying new mascot for the Arkansas Travelers.


GAH!!! Good Lord, man! Not only will Otey burrow into your skull and eat your brains to satiate its nearly unquenchable bloodlust, it will devour your very soul. The look on its face goes from creepily happy to gleefully psychotic with each repeated look.

Seriously, who are the mascot wizards who came up with this thing? A possum is bad enough — vile creatures that they are — but a swamp possum, no less? Goodness gracious.

The Travelers issued a press release to announce the odd couple — “One’s fun! One’s psychologically traumatizing!” — it reads (via Sporting Life Arkansas):

Little Rock – The Arkansas Travelers and Hughes Agency are proud to announce the unveiling of the club’s new mascots for the 2014 season. After a long search conducted by Arkansas’ minor league baseball club and premier staffing agency, they settled on two characters that grew up in Travelers lore. Both mascots hold deep connections to the franchise they will now represent. Introducing the new Travs mascots; Ace and Otey!

Ace is a native Arkansan who grew up rooting for the Travelers. He proudly served his country and upon returning to the Natural State competed and won the Mascot Tryout. With a name like “Ace” of course he is a pitcher and stands at a very menacing 7′ 2″ tall and weighs 501 pounds with a size-36 hoof. As a pitcher Ace’s favorite former Trav player is Los Angeles Angels ace right hander Jered Weaver. When Travs groundskeeper Greg Johnston isn’t looking, Ace sometimes has a chance to enjoy his favorite food; Dickey-Stephens Park Outfield Grass. 

Initially the idea was for just one mascot, but when Ace introduced the Travs and Hughes Agency to his best friend “Otey the Swamp Possum” during the interview process all bets were off. Just like Ace, Otey is also native to the state hailing from Southeast Arkansas. He grew up watching Travs games with his family from underneath the stands at Little Rock’s Ray Winder Field. Otey, who was named after former Traveler infielder and groundskeeper R.C. Otey, claims that he is the Travelers’ “Good Luck Charm”. In fact Otey believes that his superstitions helped the Travs win the 2008 Texas League Championship even though their 62-78 regular season record was the worst for a champion in Texas League history. Otey stands a stout 5 feet tall, he is a fan of second base and the “phantom double play” and his favorite number is .984, which was R.C. Otey’s career fielding percentage.

 Ace and Otey were built by Custom Characters of Glendale, California, a company with a wide-array of character-building experience that includes work for The Walt Disney Company, Dreamworks, Peanuts, Warner Bros., Paramount and 20th Century Fox.

I can see it now. Otey the Swamp Possum terrifies the kids and then Ace comes along and picks up the pieces. It’s kind of like a good cop-bad cop bit, only with screaming and crying children.

[H/T SB Nation]