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MiLB’s “Copa de la Diversión” 2018 identities revealed


Gothamite
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I’m getting very fatigued by these MiLB one-off identity changes. You are who you are. You don’t get to transform yourself to a food themed name one day and a ethnic themed name a couple months later.

 

The 51s are the 51s. They’re not the Silver Kings. They’re not the Casino Buffets or the 3 Foot Tall Margaritas.

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I find I'm much more open to the Copa de la Diversión rebrands than the various food-related one offs. At their best, they're a an excellent opportunity to expand and strengthen an existing brand by embracing a part of the local community (see: Charlotte, Durham, Hartford, Kannapolis, Memphis, and Pawtucket). At their worst they're a transparent attempt to sell some merch and generate some buzz (see: Brooklyn, Corpus Christi, Lehigh Valley, Round Rock, Sacramento, San Antonio, and San Bernardino). I definitely agree that this latter group could be accused of cheapening their brand...but I'd argue that some of these organizations (I'm looking at you Brooklyn and Lehigh Valley) have already demonstrated a willingness to indulge in branding stunts and if it wasn't Copa de la Diversión it would be something else. 

 

Then there are the rebrands that don't appear to be related to the core identity, but are still very compelling brands in their own right (see: Eugene, Oklahoma City, Stockton, and Winston-Salem). I honestly don't know where they fall on the spectrum, but ultimately I subscribe to the idea that good branding is good branding regardless of its origins. If that means having to stomach the likes of the Lehigh Valley Tocino...so be it.

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1 hour ago, LMU said:

I’m getting very fatigued by these MiLB one-off identity changes. You are who you are. You don’t get to transform yourself to a food themed name one day and a ethnic themed name a couple months later.

 

The 51s are the 51s. They’re not the Silver Kings. They’re not the Casino Buffets or the 3 Foot Tall Margaritas.

Unless you live in a city with a minor league team or you care about pipeline prospects...nobody cares about minor league baseball. This got a lot of traffic yesterday and was super intriguing to the ever growing latino community. They are going to sell so much merch to a large demo that otherwise would have zero interest in these teams.

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1 hour ago, shaydre1019 said:

Unless you live in a city with a minor league team or you care about pipeline prospects...nobody cares about minor league baseball. This got a lot of traffic yesterday and was super intriguing to the ever growing latino community. They are going to sell so much merch to a large demo that otherwise would have zero interest in these teams.

 

First, to echo Thaumatrope, I'm a fan of this rebranding program, just because 1) I like the creativity in logos and 2) teams are trying to connect to a significant demographic in their communities. But is the purpose to sell merchandise or attract fans? You and I can buy a great Corpus Christi Raspas hat, but there's a better-than-average chance we won't keep up with the schedule and prospects. Seems like the main purpose of this is to sell conversational merchandise rather than increase fandom of the minor leagues.

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9 minutes ago, WSU151 said:

 

First, I'm a fan of this rebranding program, just because 1) I like the creativity in logos and 2) teams are trying to connect to a significant demographic in their communities. But is the purpose to sell merchandise or attract fans? You and I can buy a great Corpus Christi Raspas hat, but there's a better-than-average chance we won't keep up with the schedule and prospects. Seems like the main purpose of this is to sell conversational merchandise rather than increase fandom of the minor leagues.

Or it could help pull in people who show up for the Flying Chanclas, see entertaining games and come back to see the Missions. 

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1 minute ago, MJWalker45 said:

Or it could help pull in people who show up for the Flying Chanclas, see entertaining games and come back to see the Missions. 

 

I think it's a safe bet that something like that happens...but I wish I could see the data to see if it's significant.

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3 hours ago, LMU said:

I’m getting very fatigued by these MiLB one-off identity changes. You are who you are. You don’t get to transform yourself to a food themed name one day and a ethnic themed name a couple months later.

 

The 51s are the 51s. They’re not the Silver Kings. They’re not the Casino Buffets or the 3 Foot Tall Margaritas.

 

I don't mind these if they are, indeed, one-offs. But just look at the Hillsboro Hops, a team with a stellar identity on its own.

 

This is a short-season Single A club, which means it only has 38 home dates starting from June through September. The club, though, says it will wear the Copa de la Diversión uniforms for five of those home games and wear Portland Mavericks throwbacks for all Monday home games, which is another five home dates. 

 

So because of these promotions, they'll be playing more than one-quarter of their home games in identities other than their own. 

 

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2 hours ago, gosioux76 said:

 

I don't mind these if they are, indeed, one-offs. But just look at the Hillsboro Hops, a team with a stellar identity on its own.

 

This is a short-season Single A club, which means it only has 38 home dates starting from June through September. The club, though, says it will wear the Copa de la Diversión uniforms for five of those home games and wear Portland Mavericks throwbacks for all Monday home games, which is another five home dates. 

 

So because of these promotions, they'll be playing more than one-quarter of their home games in identities other than their own. 

 

That’s a fair point. Its worh noting that Eugene and Everett are in roughly similar positions (the Sasquatch-Emerlads being the weakest of the three brands IMHO).

 

However, as a counterpoint, I would argue that any brand that can be undone by events like these wasn’t a strong enough brand to start with. Case in point: Oklahoma City. The Cielo Azule is heads and shoulders better than their regular Dodgers identity. I doubt that they would ever make the switch permanent, but if it outsells their other gear...maybe it will get them to re-evaluate.

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Now that I'm thinking this over, a select few of these one-offs could honestly work as permanent identities.

If I'm the Inland Empire 66ers, I'm having the hard conversation on whether we become the Cucuys de San Bernardino next year.

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I would not be surprised if a few of these get translated into English and become permanent identities. MiLB wants to move away from using the parent organization's name as minor league team names, so for teams still carrying a parent's name (like the OKC Dodgers), I would guess they're considering rebranding. I don't think you'd see the Oklahoma City Cielo Azul as a full-time name, but the Oklahoma City Blue Sky? That's possible. Same goes for the Pawtucket Polar Bears (even if Rhode Island is thousands of miles from actual polar bears).

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