Photograph By Colby Lysne for ESPN The Magazine
He was raised in Ohio, so Prather's first love was the Big Red Machine. But in 1981 he moved to Springfield, Mo., and Ozzie Smith and the Cards stole his heart. "I hate the Reds now-almost as much as the Cubs," says Prather, who owns 10 "Bartman" jerseys with the number of years since the Cubs have won the Series on the back. The Sign Man debuted in the '85 Series against the Royals, when his "Fat Lady Is Singing" poster was a hit on TV. Today, Prather makes a six-hour round-trip to Busch, carting 20 signs with phrases he has coined.