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May 11, 2022

Phillies ask fans to vote on new outfield design

Phillies MLB
Phillies-Cardinals-Citizens-Bank-Park-Kate-Frese_041721-1.jpg Kate Frese/for PhillyVoice

Citizens Bank Park prior to a Philadelphia Phillies game.

On the heels of a 5-4 loss to the Mariners on Tuesday night, the Phillies are turning to their fans for help. No, not pitching help, but for help deciding a new outfield design for the grass at Citizens Bank Park:

This type of news is on-brand for me for two reasons. First of all, I'm always ready to call out a team for trying to distract their fan base from their poor on-field performance with some other nonsense. "We're continuously a handful of games under .500, time to throw the fans a bone and make them feel like they're a part of the team," some marketing executive must have uttered over the last week.

Secondly, I'm very into uniforms, mascots and gameday aesthetics. While I want to poke fun at the Fightins' for putting this little contest out there amidst a disappointing start to the 2022 season, I nevertheless remain intrigued with a strong opinion on this matter. I guess their gimmick is working?

In the easiest decision of all time, the bell is the clear answer here. The Phils' 'P' logo is great, sure, but it's displayed all the time and obviously on the players' caps too. The bell? That's more unique! Everyone wants to hear the bell ringing when they attend a game at CBP. It plays up Philadelphia lore more too, which I'm a sucker for. I dig the contrast between the bell, the ivy-covered brick wall behind centerfield and then the big bell itself towering over South Philly. 

I'm not alone in vying for the bell. In the Phillies' Twitter poll to decide what the design will be, the bell is running away with things. As of this writing, it's garnered more than 71 percent of the 6,000-plus votes:

Other cool options the Phillies could've gone for:

• The Phanatic. The REAL Phanatic, not the Costco-brand, knockoff Phanatic that had been at the stadium the last couple of years.

Ricky Bottalico's angry face

• The outline of bright blue eyeglasses in honor of Michael Barkann. 

Phil and Phyllis. Remember them?!?

• A cheesesteak because it would anger a lot of people and also spur a ton of debates at the ballpark to distract the attendees from the another bullpen meltdown. 

I wonder what my dad, like many elder Philadelphians who hate technology, would say in a situation like this. Probably something along of the line of "How about they win some games and then worry about this *bleep*?"

UPDATE [May 17, 12:58 p.m.]

The bell logo rightfully won this contest:

In rarity in the modern world, common sense prevails.

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