It’s a relatively slow time of year, and therefore my supply of blog-worthy material is at preternaturally low levels. But even in these times of famine I can still piece together a post, in much the same way my forefathers were able to piece together artisanal barrels out of tree bark, dried lily pads, and sap.
First and foremost, I would be remiss if I did not mention the fact that today is Veteran’s Day. Many teams have made a note of this fact via Twitter, Facebook, and website acknowledgments, but in particular I would like to highlight THIS COLUMN written by Wisconsin Timber Rattlers broadcaster Chris Mehring. Using Gary Bedingfield’s ‘Baseball in Wartime‘ website as a guide, Chris provides a interesting primer on the those who have suited up within both professional baseball and the armed forces. The column also includes a mention of Moe Berg, whose story is fascinating and always worth re-visiting.
— Moving on to the world of logos, the Midland RockHounds unveiled their 2010 Texas League All-Star Game insignia. Behold this most quintessentially American piece of pop art:
— Moving on, I would like to point out that the Buffalo Bisons are prominently featured in a new AT&T commercial. I am unable to embed this masterwork of persuasion into this blog, but check it out HERE on the team’s Facebook page.
Let’s take a look:
The Ghosts of Casper, WY recently announced that Mr. Boyd Erickson of Bozeman, MT has been named the winner of the team’s “10th Anniversary Logo Contest”. Mr. Erickson has recently launched Tumbleweed Graphics, a design company, so perhaps this win will net him some business.
The entire concept of a Ghost anniversary seems odd to me, as ghosts exist for eternity. There is no past or future, only an unending present of spiritual uncertainty within a hazily-defined netherworld.
The sun, meanwhile, is not eternal. Nonetheless, it possess a staying power that is largely unfathomable to those of us eking out fleeting human existences. Jacksonville’s Minor League team, which is named after this pulsating orb of life-giving warmth, recently unveiled a new color scheme. Let’s take a look at the old:
And the new:
If I had listed the Suns a bit later in this post I could have entitled their segment “Burn After Reading”. But that opportunity has been lost, so let me cut to the chase and list the four new items that Reading Phillies players will be wearing in 2010:
Classic Ballpark Game Cap:
As tempted as I am to go out on that high note, I still have one more logo to share. Earlier today, the Arkansas Travelers unveiled their new ballpark logo. The “DSP” stands for “Dickey-Stephens Park”, and none of the other virtually infinite things that DSP could potentially stand for (“Dee Snyder’s Parents”, for example):
While I don’t have enough new logo information to put together a full-blown “Round-Up”, let me strike while the iron’s hot and provide some info regarding recent changes in the fascinating world of Minor League apparel.
First up is the Buffalo Bisons, who recently unveiled their 2009 jerseys. Here, in lieu of what would surely be a tedious 1000 words, is a photo:
York Mets, while each design features a level of uniqueness that is
unmatched in minor league baseball.” The white jersey will be worn at home, the gray on the road, and the black is an alternate home top that will be sported on Sunday and Thursday afternoons.
Let us now move on to the ever-elusive West Virginia Power, who have “revised” their logo. According to the omniscient press release, this new and improved version “is a mixture of the original BP logo and the Power text logo.” Let’s check it out:
Perhaps even more exciting is that the Power will soon unveil a new “mystery” logo. There are literally infinite possibilities when it comes to what this “mystery” might be, but I’m hoping it will somehow incorporate a magnifying glass, a smudged fingerprint, and a silhouette of the Hardy Boys.
If anyone is aware of any logo changes I have not yet covered, then send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org
I have not forsaken you, dear readers. I’ve been busy is all.
But, tardy or not, information will be conveyed. I am merely the conduit through whom the information flows, and my lollygagging is no match for the power of Minor League news. So let’s see what streams forth from that eternal wellspring…
Cave Shrimp Lose — Regular readers will recall this post, in which I detailed Bowling Green’s “Name the Team” contest. Unfortunately, “Cave Shrimp” was not chosen. Instead, the club will be calling themselves the “Hot Rods”. Here’s the rationale for the club’s name:
are very excited to develop the Hot Rods brand, which connects the
spirit and heritage of this region’s automotive industry with a
creative name and logo associated with the fun of minor league
And here’s the logo, which was designed by the all-powerful Plan B Branding.
This logo is like a Rorschach test, as everytime I look at it it momentarily assumes a different form. I swear, the last time I looked at it I saw an angry dog face. The dog’s tongue was sticking out the side of his mouth.
Also new on the scene for ’09 are the Reno Aces (formerly the Tucson Sidewinders). The name is on one level a reference to Nevada’s thriving gaming industry. But, as always, there is more. Take it away, press release:
“In addition to the name’s Nevada ties, it also has meaning in baseball
lingo– a team’s “ace” is its best pitcher. Reno’s affiliation with
Major League Baseball’s Arizona Diamondbacks should mean that Reno fans
will see many ace pitchers in the coming years as Diamondbacks pitchers
have won five of the last nine National League Cy Young Awards.”
Okay, press release. Bring it back. Here’s the Aces’ primary logo, which, to my eyes, is not nearly as amorphous as the Hot Rods:
Still…The diamond situated in the midst of the “A” is a nice touch, as is the reference to a baseball “club”. Reading way too much into it, the “c” looks vaguely like a spade. As of post time, however, I still cannot find a heart. Me and the tin man both.
I have not done the most thorough job of highlighting team uniform and logo changes this offseason, but I must draw everyone’s attention to an announcement that was made in the fine state of California yesterday afternoon:
The Visalia Oaks are now the Visalia Rawhide. Sez the team:
“The name change, along with a sweeping rebranding of club logos,
colors, mascot and uniforms, and the renovation of Recreation Ballpark,
represents the start of a new era for the 63-year-old ballclub.”
“[Rawhide] invokes the agriculture and dairy industries’ prominence in Tulare
County, it’s fun and family-oriented, and it even comes with a
ready-made theme song. Not to mention that ‘Rawhide’ has always been a
slang word in baseball; both baseballs and baseball gloves are made of
rawhide. We also like the way it gives a nod of respect to another
local sports institution — the historic Cowhide football rivalry. We
believe it all ties in very nicely, and we think it’s going to be great
fun for everyone involved.”
You got to love when a team name comes equipped with a built-in theme song. Perhaps the club could also play clips from the 1938 western “Rawhide” on the videoboard — the movie stars Lou Gehrig in his only film role! It would certainly be a good idea to steer clear of the 1981 “adult western” of the same name, however.
The press release goes on to note the team’s growing tendency to align itself with Visalia’s Dairy industry, and illustrates this fact by mentioning the coverage it received from yours truly. I have finally made it to the big time! Lastly, Visalia fans have some stadium improvements to look forward to as well:
Other additions include new concessions and a new merchandise store. A
grass berm seating space, where families can spread out a beach blanket
and watch a ballgame, will also debut, as well as a kids’ play area
that will include a whiffle ball field, speed pitch, picnic table
seating and a host of inflatable games. Renovated skyboxes, new team
dugouts, and a re-laid playing surface will round out the myriad of
positive changes at the ballpark by Opening Day.
All in all, it looks like 2009 is going to be a memorable season for Visalia fans. As the club so brilliantly puts it — It’s going to be a whole “moo” ballgame.
Well, only eight logos now remain from the initial field of 64. Things are getting tense, and tempers are starting to flare. For proof of the combatants’ increasingly frayed nerves, one needs to look no further than the battle between the Clinton LumberKings and the Quad City River Bandits. Yesterday, the River Bandits sent out a press release, insinuating that Clinton’s Louie the LumberKing may be a user of performance-enhancing drugs. A sample quote:
"Fans and players alike have noticed a number of changes in Louie’s appearance since the end of the 2007 season, including a larger crown size, an increase in facial hair, and strikingly larger biceps and triceps…rumors have also circulated that he has become more aggressive since trading in his 2×4 for a baseball bat."
Louie himself quickly shot back, utilizing an excuse that I sincerely hope is soon adopted by MLB players who have been accused of steroid use:
"Yes, I do look a little different this year. But all I did was change my facial hair and roll up my sleeves."
"I mean, this is a team that wore sky blue and orange uniforms, had three sets of jersey numbers, and had six mascots prior to the season. They should really be focusing more on themselves. They haven’t even figured out what to call their raccoon yet. All I can think of is that they must be starving for a win of any kind after losing seven straight to get bounced from the playoffs last year."
Louie the LumberKing: Just as deadly with a keyboard as he is with a 2×4.
Voting is still going on over at Darren Rovell’s Sport’s Biz Blog. As of this typing (6:40 p.m. ET), Clinton had garnered 57% of the vote.
In other ridiculous Minor League-themed bracket tournament news, Minors Moniker Madness is now in the Sweet 16.
You sure got that right, italicized text! Luckily, I have come up with a foolproof method for not having to write about this topic anymore. I’ll just cut and paste from a reader email!
"…the Rainiers have changed their look. They’ve adopted a new updated alternate logo and jersey. Except, it’s not all that alternate, since the team will sport the new look for all home games Thursday through Sunday."
I couldn’t have said it better for myself. Therefore, I won’t. A picture of the new,
not-all-that-alternate logo is located at the top of this post, while a shot of the new uni is located to your right. Both photos are courtesy of No Rhubarb!. Head over there for much more info on the Rainiers’ new duds.
More. Always More.
I’ve already spent a good deal of time this offseason covering the myriad changes that have taken place in Quad Cities (new ownership, name, mascot, logos, etc). Well, as an addendum to all this fine River Bandits coverage, I would like to point out that the team unveiled their new uniforms yesterday. The press release is located here, and a big ol’ photo is located right beneath the words you are reading:
(from left to right: Home, Alternate, Road, Batting Practice)
Have a great weekend, folks. I’ve typed all I can type and I can’t type no more.
This offseason’s seemingly unending run of logo changes have greatly affected my usually well-calibrated emotional equilibrium. To put it simply, it is just plain exhausting to have to devote so much of one’s time toward garment-related issues. But I am proud to say that I have reached the final stage in the "writing about new logos" grieving process: acceptance. From now on, I’m just reporting the facts. I have a job to do, and I intend to do it well.
On Sunday, in anticipation of their 10th anniversary season, the Staten Island Yankees unveiled their new look. The club didn’t deviate too far from the basic look and feel of their parent team, which is not surprising given the fact that they play in the heart of New York Yankees territory. Nonetheless, there are many details that are unique to Staten Island.
As General Jane Rogers observed in the press release: "The new logos and uniforms represent a great mix of community pride and Yankees heritage."
For instance, every uniform sleeve will include an "SINY" patch adorned with five stars (one
representing each borough in New York City). The home cap features a stylized lowercase white "y", while in the road version the "y" is in blue. A batting practice cap will feature a red, white and blue top hat logo, and the rather busy alternate Sunday cap includes a bat, top hat, and interlocking SI.
Fans wishing to obtain merchandise featuring the new logos will have to cool their heels for a while, as it will not be available until the club’s Back-to-Baseball Bash in April. That might seem like it’s a long ways away from now, but try to maintain a little perspective. The earth is approximately 4.5 billion years old. What’s another two months in the scheme of things?
Thanks to Robert Pimpsner at Baby-Bombers.com for first alerting me to this logo change.
At this point in the offseason, I have come to regard logo changes as if they were a slasher-flick villain. Everytime I think that they are dead and gone, I feel a firm and sickly grip on my ankles and get pulled into the abyss for yet another round of nightmarish battle. So here we go:
On Tuesday, the Portland Beavers unveiled their new identity!
The Beavers, the Triple-A affiliate of the San Diego Padres, have chosen to place a strong emphasis on their long and distinguished past as a Minor League franchise. At this point, I must defer to the (fantastically long and detailed) press release:
"The new logo and uniforms embrace the history that Portlanders told us is so meaningful to them," said team President and General Manager Merritt Paulson. "The look helps to underscore the fact that the Beavers have been Portland’s team since 1903."
The new look is centered around Lucky the Beaver (any middle school boys reading this are
commanded to stop laughing now). Lucky is the focus of the primary logo, which features "a charismatic beaver swinging from the left side of the plate, encompassed by a round border that includes the phrasing ‘Portland Beavers’ and ‘EST’D 1903.’"
Fans desiring more information on the ins and outs of the Beavers’ identity overhaul are advised once again to check out the press release. It includes detailed information on home, road, and Sunday uniforms as well as an update on merchandise availability. In short, it accomplishes all that I cannot. After waging battle with the new logo beast over the past three and a half months, my energy reserves are just too low.
After a slightly-longer-than-usual gap between posts, I return to action this evening with information on something that is near and dear to my heart. In fact, it is something I cannot escape from, no matter how hard I try.
I am talking, of course, about logo changes. This past Thursday, the Vancouver Canadians unveiled their new look! The Canadians’ recent revamp is a relatively subtle one, but worth noting nonetheless. Perhaps most significantly, the club’s primary "C" logo now says "C’s". According to the press release, this reflects the team nickname most commonly used by fans and also draws a parallel between the Canadians and their parent club, the Oakland A’s (I am disappointed that the Canadians did not call their new look a "C Change", but that’s just me).
The new logo is just the latest in a long line of recent changes for the Canadians, who were purchased in February of 2007 by a local ownership group. As this once-esteemed blog mentioned last week, the inimitable Andrew Seymour was recently hired as the new General Manager, and long-time baseball executive Andy Dunn officially took the role of Team President earlier in the month.
Vancouver has a long history as a Triple-A city, and fielded a team in the Pacific Coast League as recently as 1999. Will the Canadians’ new personnel and ownership attempt to "C’s the Day" by raising the club’s profile within the Minor League Baseball landscape? It should be interesting season up north.