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Few people have risen to pop culture prominence this year more than Dr. Anthony Fauci, whose work as the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases has been thrust in the spotlight, as the country continues to search for a way out of the coronavirus pandemic.
Fauci, who has been at NIAID since 1984, has become a rare — if polarizing — figure in Washington, unafraid to speak out against many of President Trump’s claims on Covid-19, while establishing himself as a source of information, and voice of reason. His media appearances both in interviews and at White House press conferences also inspired a popular Saturday Night Live skit, with the doctor portrayed by none other than Brad Pitt.
Now, Dr. Fauci is about to get immortalized in bobblehead form, as the sports memorabilia site, FOCO has unveiled a Fauci-inspired bobblehead doll based off his appearance at the Washington Nationals home opener this year. A life-long baseball fan, Fauci took the mound in a Nationals cap, jersey, and yes, a CDC-approved face cover, to throw out the ceremonial first pitch.
FOCO is taking pre-orders now for this limited-edition release, which the company says is handcrafted and hand-painted. The entire thing measures about eight inches in height, and the bobblehead is mounted on a sturdy base with Fauci’s name and “First Pitch 2020” written on the front to commemorate the 2020 MLB season.
While the public’s love for Fauci has inspired a host of unofficial merch on sites like Etsy and Redbubble, FOCO says this bobblehead is an “officially-licensed” collaboration (“Yes, we had sign off from his representatives,” explains Matt Katz, the head of licensing at FOCO. “They said because he is a public figure he is okay with his likeness being used”).
As for how the Fauci first pitch bobblehead compares to the real thing? Take a look at the clip below of Dr. Fauci’s first pitch at the stadium and decide for yourself:
The Fauci bobblehead is among a number of new collectibles available at FOCO.com right now. The site also recently released a limited-edition Bubba Wallace bobblehead, which features the race car driver posing next to his car, with the track behind him.
FOCO says everything was hand-painted with meticulous attention to detail, including the striping and sponsor tags on Wallace’s uniform, and the realistic paint job on the car.
Only 2020 of these Bubba Wallace bobbleheads were released, making them a true collectors piece. Each one is individually numbered, further adding to their value and authenticity.
You can see FOCO’s complete current lineup of merch and collectibles at FOCO.com.