Portland Baseball Team in a Pickle After Mascot Posts Photo Fans Don't Think Is Kosher
The Portland Pickles fielded some unexpected feedback from fans after the minor league team's mascot, Dillon, shared a photo that prompted a tart response.
The team had teased on Wednesday afternoon that Dillion would be taking over the team's Twitter account that day, tweeting, "MASCOT TWITTER TAKEOVER! Our mascot, Dillon, will be taking over our Twitter account NOW! Our next tweet will be him. Feel free to ask any questions or just show your support!"
The next tweet, sent by Dillon, raised a few eyebrows.
"New phone who dis," Dillon captioned a photo of his thumb in front of his Pickles jersey-clad torso.
The only problem? With Dillon's full hand cropped out just below, the shot's upward angle framed Dillon's skyward thumb square in the center of his lap. Some baseball fans found it all too easy to draw rather, ahem, Freudian conclusions about what Dillon might be implying with the image, consciously or not.
Four minutes later, the team tweeted, "We have ended our mascot takeover. It's come to our attention that this photo can be misinterpreted as a disturbing image. Dillon would like to go on the record and say that he was trying to give his fans a thumbs up."
Shortly after, the team offered a series of tweets that were, naturally, peppered with puns.
"We have identified the social media manager involved in the incident and will be launching an internal investigation. An unnamed @GherkinBaseball mascot was involved," the team wrote on Thursday, name-checking their affiliate team, the Portland Gherkins.
"We will continue our internal investigation and will likely release the findings tomorrow (1/14)," they continued. "We assure you that we are hard at work to get to the bottom of this and it is a big dill to us."
The incident even drew attention from popular American candy bar Snickers, who commented on the team's page, "Maybe you need a SNICKLE."
One social media user even tried for a little vigilante administration, writing, "HR here. Dillon, please meet me in my office."
On Thursday, the team revealed Dillon was no longer running the page after the incident drew national attention and headlines.
"Jan. 13th UPDATE: our mascot, Dillon T. Pickle, has released the following video statement regarding yesterdays scandill. You may be SHOCKED at his response," the team tweeted.
At the end of the video, Dillion can be seen in a photo with the text "I was framed!" as the theme song from Curb Your Enthusiasm plays in the background.
As of Friday, it was back to business as usual for the team, who shared a family-friendly tweet with puppy and kitty pics meant to encourage fans to purchase Pickles merchandise for #NationalDressUpYourPetDay.