After days of rising anticipation, the greatest mascot in all of sports debuted a new look Sunday.
NBC Sports Philadelphia’s Marc Farzetta got the first look at the subtle changes to the longtime mascot. The made-over Phillie Phanatic now rocks stars around the eyes, blue socks, all red shoes, scales under the arms and hands free from fur. The tail has also changed color, from green and blue to solid blue.
While the look was different, the Phanatic's mischievous antics were the same during the Phillies-Pirates game in Clearwater on Sunday.
The new-look Phanatic comes amid a legal dispute between the Phillies and the firm that designed the mascot back in 1978.
The Phillies have sued the firm, asking a federal court to rule that a license agreement struck in 1984 should give the team ownership in perpetuity.
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The firm Harrison/Erickson, based in New York City and co-founded by a designer who helped Jim Henson create the Muppets, has threatened to seek an injunction against the baseball franchise that would bar the use of the Phanatic, according to the lawsuit.