Tagged: Ryan Howard Garden Gnome

Reading’s Gnome-Field Advantage

One of the 2010’s most memorable Minor League giveaway items was the Reading Phillies’ Ryan Howard Garden Gnome.

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This bearded base-stander garnered a lot of attention, not all of it positive, but it was a bona fide hit with the fanbase. And when something’s a hit, a sequel usually results.

“Ryan Howard Garden Gnome — Version #2,” will be given away as part of the R-Phils’ big Opening Night ceremonies on April 14. Here’s a glimpse:


The Howard gnome’s searching, soulful gaze will have a lot to take in on April 14, which will be the first game at Reading’s FirstEnergy Stadium after a a $10 million renovation project. But will anything going on that evening be able to top the gnome itself?

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The most spectacular gnome-related piece of news is this, from the press release: All fans that enter on Opening Night
will receive a free entry form, and one lucky fan will take home this one-of-a kind Life-Size Ryan Howard Garden Gnome estimated to be 550 pounds!

Pictures of this quarter-ton woodlands slugger are not yet available, but I promise that Ben’s Biz Blog will have them as soon as they are available. My livelihood depends on being able to make such promises.

It’s mightily hard to follow news of a 550-pound gnome giveaway, but something’s got to. Staying within the confines of the Keystone State, the Altoona Curve have finally bequeathed a name upon their new engineer mascot:

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This chiseled tracksman will henceforth be known as “Tenacious Casey” (aka Tenacious C), making him the first mascot with a name influenced by a comedic rock and roll duo. The Curve do not acknowledge Jack Black specifically, however. Sez the team:

The name pairs the adjective, tenacious, used to describe someone who ispersistent in maintaining, adhering to or seeking something valued or desired, with Casey. Casey pays homage to Casey Jones, who was legendarily one of the most tenacious engineers in American railroad history.

Either way, it seems that a “Family Guy” cameo is in Mr. C’s future:

Overalls, it’s a pretty good look.


Snowman Decimation Immortalized (and Other Seasonal Happenings)

If there’s one thing that we can all agree on, it’s that a lot of snow has fallen from the sky this week. For Minor League teams, it can be tough to capitalize on a weather phenomenon so antithetical to ideal baseball conditions. But that doesn’t mean they’re not going to try!

The Wisconsin Timber Rattlers are certainly capitalizing, as now is a most apropos time to unveil a snow-themed Opening Day bobblehead. 

It’s Scooter Vs. The Snowman!


This truly unique item was inspired by the Rattlers’ Opening Day snowout this past season. With no game to play, the players took to the snow-covered field in order to let off some steam. And during this unsupervised free time, Scooter Gennett unleashed a brutal attack upon a hapless snowman.

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And now, that moment has been immortalized for all time! The “Scooter Vs. The Snowman” bobblehead will be given away to all fans attending Opening Day at Fox Cities Stadium on April 7. Hopefully it will inspire a “player vs. inanimate object” bobblehead subgenre.

Gennett’s snowman attack took place more than nine months ago, but fans of the now will be gratified to know that there are plenty of more recent snow-covered ballpark photos floating around the internet. My colleague Danny Wild has done the world a tremendous service by compiling many of them in an MiLB.com photo album, but it’s the ones from Spokane that really stand out.

Avista Stadium will be hosting an outdoor junior hockey league game this weekend, resulting in a fairly stunning ballpark transformation. 



A far more informal winter sport conversion can be found at Joseph L. Bruno Stadium, as Tri-City ValleyCats assistant general manager Matt Callahan recently took to the outfield slopes. Do not try this at home (assuming your home is a Minor League Baseball stadium).  

And then there’s snow-covered FirstEnergy Stadium in Reading, a 60-year-old facility in the midst of an extensive $10 million renovation project.


The snow has temporarily slowed down the pace of the project, giving stadium denizen Ryan Howard Garden Gnome a rare opportunity for wintertime solace and reflection.


It’s like the old saying goes: There’s snow place like gnome!