1984 was a grim year for the San Francisco Giants. The team finished dead last, losing 96 games. But no one -- not the players, not the front office, not even the fans -- had as nightmarish a time as Wayne Doba. That season, the 33-year-old actor was selected to play the club's first mascot.
The "Crazy Crab" was conceived as an anti-mascot. The Giants wanted to satire the late 1970's mascot craze, which had introduced now-iconic characters like the Phillie Phanatic. So the Giants gave their Crab an intentionally shabby foam costume which looked like a hamburger with arms; during spring training, TV ads showed manager Frank Robinson attempting to strangle the Crab; at games, announcers would encourage fans to boo whenever the Crab took the field.
It was an experiment unlike anything in professional sports.
Aired: 20 May 2015