The Most Forgotten Mascot on America’s Most Famous Team: The Story of Dandy the Yankees Mascot

Wayde Harrison

The most notable mascot in New York is easily Mr. Met, but back in the 70’s the Yankees and George Steinbrenner wanted to create their own iconic mascot, but got quite the opposite. When building an iconic mascot, it has to be bigger than life, quite like the Philly Phanatic, who was created by the same maker of Dandy. After Dandy was birthed into the world, the Yankees hired him to a three-year $30,000 deal, and it went downhill faster than a hotdog being swallowed by Joey Chestnut.

Dandy was to be released in July of 1979, but weeks prior to the imminent debut of Dandy, The San Diego Chicken and was chased by Lou Piniella and had a glove thrown at him. After this incident, Steinbrenner made a quote saying that mascots had no place in baseball, which made no sense considering Dandy was debuting shortly, but his debut was pushed back due to the incident. Dandy did eventually debut in late July of 1979, but in August of the same year, Thurman Munson died in a plane crash. Dandy resembled Thurman, so Dandy was put back on hiatus. Eddie Layton made a song for Dandy, but it never got played at Yankee Stadium.

Wall Street Journal

Once finally reinstated, Dandy was off the field and placed in the upper deck of Yankee Stadium, away from everything important where mascots should be. Once Dandy’s lease was up, the creators of the mascot did not renew it, saying Dandy did not get the support from management it deserved. Once returned to his owners, Dandy was thrown into an industrial shredder, something the creators said was a horrible thing to have to do. Years later, George Steinbrenner, who gave the approval of Dandy, had no recollection of Dandy or the fact that the Yankees ever had a mascot, proving Dandy to be one of the saddest and most forgotten mascots of all time.

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