SFGiants58

MLB: The Defunct Saga - Carolina Twins (Two Variants) Updated

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Yeah, they've since changed that Cougars logo for obvious reasons, but you inadvertently did a truer update to it than the one the actual team did, which is just generic Delusions of Brandeur stuff.

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Now, onto my preferred Panthers concept!

 

FLORIDA PANTHERS, PT. II - Creamsicle Puma concolor coryi

 

The logos are all the same as my previous concept, but Creamsicle orange replaces metallic gold, as it’s light enough to emulate a Florida Panther’s fur color while dark enough to avoid A’s comparisons. Green and Creamsicle are now co-dominant.

 

21lZpfx.png


The uniforms drop pinstripes and thick cuffs in favor of knit trim. Orange bills appear on the primary cap, while stripes also manifest themselves on the socks.

 

fBO9Bhy.png


Vests give way to an orange jersey, while the green jersey now includes the “Florida” script and an all-green cap.

 

BaT7T81.png

 

The jacket is a palette and script swap operation.

 

EGGQaaa.png


The two takes make for a fantastic exploration of what could have been had Frank Morsani gotten his team. C+C is appreciated, as always!

 

Up next, let’s hit the waves with the Schur/Porter/Kohl expansion group!

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I’ve looked through a few of these looking for something to critique but I just can’t find anything. Great job!

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On 12/18/2018 at 7:34 PM, the admiral said:

Yeah, they've since changed that Cougars logo for obvious reasons, but you inadvertently did a truer update to it than the one the actual team did, which is just generic Delusions of Brandeur stuff.

 

Thanks. The Florida Panther is a bit cougar-ish.

 

On 12/19/2018 at 8:08 AM, coco1997 said:

Now that’s a magnificent color scheme! 

On 12/20/2018 at 2:30 PM, Cardsblues02 said:

I’m blown away by that Panthers concept. Great execution color balance wise. Nice job. 

On 12/21/2018 at 12:24 PM, JG36 said:

I’ve looked through a few of these looking for something to critique but I just can’t find anything. Great job!

 

Thanks, guys!

 

FLORIDA/TAMPA BAY WHITECAPS, PT. I - Ride the Wave

 

Tampa Bay Sweepstakes Introduction

 

I’ve detailed before how the Tampa Bay Area had three groups representing the market. We’ve already seen the Morsani group, but what about the other two? This pair included:

  • A group headed up by principal investor Abe Gosman, Sarasota-based businessman Tom Hammonds, worst GM ever Hawk Harrelson, and Hall of Fame pitcher/broadcaster Don Drysdale. Their pitch never received any serious consideration, as they didn’t have the necessary financial backing and their presentation in New York was rather unimpressive. Said presentation included an aside from Gosman’s sons about how the team would prop up an anti-drug campaign. No, I didn’t make that up,1 
  • A partnership between St. Petersburg Cardinals owners/cousins Steve Porter and Joel Schur. They were from outside the market, which gave them a negative perception from the locals (gee, where have I heard that before?). Allen and Sidney Kohl emerged as the primary financial backers, with Roy Disney adding his clout (his $660-million net worth) to the bid. While they added Tampa Bay-based investors like Claude Focardi (who had connections to the Cardinals as a member of the “Bat Boys” club in St. Pete), their reputation among the pro-Morsani locals was still poor. Heck, even Rick Dodge (the man leading the charge for St. Petersburg baseball) didn’t care for them.2   

The Porter/Schur/Kohl group emerged as the NL expansion committee’s favorite, having aced their presentation and held a tour for the NL expansion committee. The team went so far as to adopt the Florida/Tampa Bay Whitecaps name (despite running a “name the team” contest).3 However, events transpired towards the end of the process that spelled their doom. 

 

kbsNcmW.png 40589191.jpg?function=resize&mode=SCALE&width=600&maxheight=430

(Image of Steve Porter from Stadium for Rent, Sidney Kohl posed with his wife, Dorothy)4


The Kohl brothers turned into a problem for the group. Sidney Kohl barely showed up to the St. Petersburg meeting with the expansion committee, while also coming to disagreements with both Porter and Schur. The Kohls and their investors were supposed to put up about $50 million of the projected $75 million expansion fee, at least according to Porter (some reports falsely indicated that the Kohls would put forth about $50-million of their own money). When the NL finalized the expansion fee at $95 million, the Kohls did not want to increase their ($5 million-$15 million) or their investors’ contributions into the group, especially after Porter tried to gain a controlling interest in proposed partnership.5

 

On this matter, Porter said:

 

Quote

“Part of the difficulty was that I brought in Bostick and I wanted Sidney and Allen Kohl to trim back their ownership holdings. I said, ‘If you’re not going to bring in investors then you have to make room for some of the other people.’ That was an arduous negotiation but we ultimately reached an agreement in which Sidney no longer controlled [the group]. We revised our percentage ownerships and he made it clear he wasn’t going to either increase his contribution or raise money.”6 


After revising percentages to eliminate the Kohls/Kohl investors controlling interest (leaving them with only their small personal contribution) throughout the first few months of 1991, Porter scrambled scrambling with limited partnership organizers at SunTrust Banks to find investors in the Tampa Bay Area. However, Porter’s relative secrecy and his misrepresentation of the Kohls’ contribution (i.e., implying that they’d put forth the $50 million or $60 million out of pocket) left many prospective investors unprepared to pay the $5-$20 million that Porter demanded out of his new investors. It quickly became clear to the NL expansion committee that this group did not have the financial solvency to be awarded a team.7  


TL;DR: Disagreements between the Kohl brothers and Porter over bringing new investors forward led to Porter frantically trying to piece together a new limited partnership. Once the NL got wind of this, they were officially donezola. Some may say that the AL’s concern over the NL holding two of the largest Florida markets may have been an issue, but the Porter group’s financial stress (compared to the stability of Denver and Miami’s money) did them in.8 


In .gif form, with the man in black as the Kohls/Tampa Bay Area investors and the guy in red as Porter demanding both controlling interest and outside contributions:

 

A0CSP2O.gif

 

But what if the Kohls had signed a partnership agreement and gathered enough investors to properly set up the team? What would they look like?

 

We don’t know anything about the team other than their sobriquet, Whitecaps. We also know that they would have chosen the name Florida Whitecaps if Denver was selected or Tampa Bay Whitecaps if South Florida was selected (I’m guess the Marlins would be the South Florida Marlins, since Wayne Huizenga didn’t want to use the “Miami” name – more details in the footnote).9 This gave me a fantastic clean slate with which to work. 

 

Starting with the Florida edition, I decided (after consulting with @MJD7 and @Htown1141) to use a navy/light blue/silver color palette. I figured that such a palette was reasonable for the time, with the trend towards darker colors and the popularity of light blue with teams like the Tampa Bay Lightning, the Orlando Magic, and the eventual Carolina Panthers. I also used a Friz Quadrata variant (Quadrat Serial) as the primary font. Since I was going to render the scripts in a different manner than the fellow Quadratist Mariners, I didn’t see a problem with the similar lettering. 

 

The wave logo is my take on the rejected Clippers logo from the early-‘90s, with an extended lower part. This forms the center of the primary (in front of baseball stitching) and the tertiary. The cap logo, with an insert mimicking the wave pattern, is the secondary.

 

TVIpzTs.png

 

The uniforms follow a simple approach with their placket trim. The caps and helmets feature light blue bills against navy crowns, while the uniforms use MLB Block Standard numbers and Block Condensed NoB’s (on nameplates, as is often seen in this period). I incorporated the wave onto the wordmarks for a bit of extra flare.

 

yyYnAKt.png

 

Alternates include both a light blue top and a navy jersey. The caps paired with these uniforms include a special “white cap” (I couldn’t pass up that opportunity) and an all-navy hat with the tertiary logo on it.

 

44YtDsh.png

 

The jacket incorporates the “wave” pattern on the sleeves.

 

L3dRedB.png

 

The Tampa Bay variant is the same, except with “Tampa Bay” replacing “Florida” in all instances.

 

8XTxZnc.png

 

sgDiPMP.png

 

Gojtpdp.png

 

l94wmp9.png

 

The Whitecaps could have looked fantastic, had they gotten off the ground. C+C is appreciated, as always!

 

Up next, what if I didn’t hold to the New Historicist simulation and did whatever I wanted with their design. We’ll see that soon!
 

Bob Andelman and Lori Parsells, Stadium For Rent: Tampa Bay’s Quest for Major League Baseball, 2nd edition (St. Petersburg, FL: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform, 2015), 165, 198-99

2 Ibid, 169–82.

3 Ibid, 244; Marc Topkin, “Name-Dropping: It’s a Team Effort,” Tampa Bay Times, May 24, 1991, sec. Sports; Marc Topkin and Randy Cremer, “South Florida, Denver Become National - Indians, Partnership Have Stadium Deal,” Tampa Bay Times, July 6, 1991, sec. Sports.

4 Andelman and Parsells, Stadium For Rent, 170.

5 Ibid, 244–50.

6 Ibid, 250.

7 Ibid, 250-52.

8 Ibid, 204, 258.

9 The exact quote is: "But they almost were called the South Florida Marlins. And, despite the exhortations of Dade County civic leaders, the name Miami Marlins never struck a chord with team owner Wayne Huizenga. 'Baseball needs that regional approach today. You need to draw from that bigger area,' Huizenga said. 'There's over 100 cities in South Florida. Well, now 100 cities can call us their own -- for that matter, every city in the state of Florida can.'" Tom Davidson and Vicki McCash, “Huizenga Opts for Regional Name,” Sun Sentinel, July 6, 1991, sec. Local.

 

Edited by SFGiants58

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Diggin' it, it's a much more interesting version of the Rays in a lot of respects. I like how the TB monogram turned out.

Is Sidney Kohl a brother of former Wisconsin senator and grocery magnate Herb? They look alike.

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Great identity and a great color scheme! The cap logos in particular for both the Florida and Tampa Bay versions are strong. 

 

4 hours ago, the admiral said:

Is Sidney Kohl a brother of former Wisconsin senator and grocery magnate Herb? They look alike.

 

He is indeed. For years Herb Kohl's Milk House was the highlight of the Wisconsin State Fair. Mmm, root beer flavored milk...

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Hi!  I think as a pun, a team called the ‘Whitecaps’ oughtta have literal white caps for their whole uniform... other than that, I think they’re amazing!  Keep up the good work, and MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!

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On 6/27/2018 at 5:31 AM, SFGiants58 said:

NEW YORK (BASEBALL) GIANTS, PT. 1 - Gotto Makes a Giant Contribution

 

Ah yes, it's time to do my favorite team in the previous incarnation! When trying to assess why the Giants left New York City, one can point to a variety of factors. These factors included, but were not limited to:

 

1. The poor condition of the Polo Grounds, due to a lack of funds (the team and stadium rentals were Horace Stoneham's only asset) and hasty construction of the building.

2. Changes in transportation necessitated the need for larger parking lots. Unfortunately for the Giants, much of the land was taken up by Robert Moses' (I have yet to read Power Broker, which I'm hoping to rectify soon) housing projects and other plans. Moses eventually planned to tear down the Polo Grounds in 1962 (one the Giants' lease was up), with speculation about moving them into Yankee Stadium (the Flushing Meadows site wasn't in the works just yet).1 

3. The team spent the post-WWII period in a bit of a freefall, with many poor finishes throughout the time (aside from the 1951 pennant and 1954 World Series). 

4 (and the biggest one, IMHO). Demographic changes in Harlem, the Polo Grounds' Manhattan neighborhood, ensured that the Giants would not be viable in the long run. The Depression and World War II had a marked impact on the area, with many wealthy white residents leaving the area (for both economic and racist reasons - "White Flight"). Due to the increasingly poor conditions of the neighborhood (due to neglect from government programs and a lack of legitimate employment options for many of the African-American and Latin American residents), crime increased.2 With fewer local fans having disposable income for games or a willingness to walk within the "sketchy" area (one created by both racism and apathy), attendance declined. This is the factor that drove the other ones (renovations, transport, competition, etc.). Stoneham believed that fans would feel safer if they could drive from the suburbs to the stadium, but the lack of parking prevented that.

 

TL;DR: This .gif, but with Son Goku as socio-economic/competitive factors and Frieza as the New York Baseball Giants.

 

tumblr_n7329ks7e41qfbz1so1_500.gif

 

However, what if the move didn't go through? What if the team became the Yankees' tenants or found a way to build a Manhattan stadium, set up shop at Flushing Meadows (in the unlikely event that the Dodgers stayed in Brooklyn), or pre-empted the Football Giants by heading to New Jersey? What would these baseball Giants look like?

 

When setting out on this project, I figured that the baseball Giants would not look all that different from the current San Francisco squad. I tried to approach their New York incarnation from the same angle as the team's 2000 redesign, tastefully updating the 1950s/60s uniform set. However, I wanted to incorporate a bit of the Mets' fantastic identity into the design (outside of the "NY," sourced from my previous Mets concept). So, I reasoned that the baseball Giants would want a new primary logo to celebrate a "revival" of sorts, one designed by a very certain Ray Gotto.

 

The new primary is pretty much be the same as the Mets' classic logo, albeit with the Brooklyn elements obscured (e.g., the Williamsburgh Savings Bank Building no longer features, done by using the post-digitization version of the logo) and the bridge being a general suspension bridge (maybe the George Washington Bridge?). The Giants' one-color wordmark is at the center. The tertiary minimizes the primary to a smaller design, with both the cap insignia and the 1883 establishment date. The wordmark font is Ocean Beach Major with modifications, as it's a fantastic modernization of the Giants/Pirates' font style.

 

Wq5j7QC.png

 

The uniforms are pretty much the same as my San Francisco Giants concept, but with some notable differences. The number font and the NOB's/white-base home uniforms are off of my Seals/retro Giants concept, while the new primary logo resides on the sleeves. I kept arched wordmarks, as the logo implied that the Giants are named after the giant skyscrapers of the city. Arching does a better job of invoking that compared to arc-ed wordmarks (which work in San Francisco, with the Giants referring to the "giant" bridges of the city - my flimsy rationalization of the name).

 

ekT3DMv.png

 

The alternates bear a great similarity to my old Giants concept as well, with an orange-billed cap paired with an orange top and a black alternate that has the cap logo as an insignia.

 

WcfyAVH.png

 

The second set of alternates pairs the orange-billed cap with the home uniform and contains the throwback to 1933 from my previous concept (featuring @Gothamite's preferred "NY"). It's "different enough" from the current set that it'd work.

 

75kHdx1.png

 

The dugout jacket is an update of my SF Giants jacket, albeit with the new primary logo and the "NY" on the back. I just love that vintage cursive script.

 

MN4jWkf.png

 

It's a pretty simple concept, emulating the Giants' 2000 redesign while incorporating a few Mets-like elements. C+C is appreciated, as always!

 

Up next, let's take that Mets influence a little further.

 

1Robert F. Garratt, Home Team: The Turbulent History of the San Francisco Giants (Lincoln: U of Nebraska Press, 2017), 3-9; Stew Thornley, “Polo Grounds (New York) | Society for American Baseball Research,” Society for American Baseball Research, accessed June 27, 2018, https://sabr.org/bioproj/park/58d80eca.

Michael Javen Fortner, Black Silent Majority: The Rockefeller Drug Laws and the Politics of Punishment (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 2015), 24-27; Federico Ribes Tovar, Lolita Lebrón, la prisionera (New York: Plus Ultra Educational Publishers, 1974), 93.

Hey, what font are you using? I would love to use it for a concept

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23 hours ago, the admiral said:

Diggin' it, it's a much more interesting version of the Rays in a lot of respects. I like how the TB monogram turned out.

Is Sidney Kohl a brother of former Wisconsin senator and grocery magnate Herb? They look alike.

 

Thanks! A lot of my Tampa Bay designs play like modified versions of the Rays, since I like exploring ways to improve the basic structure of that identity.

 

As @coco1997 said, Sidney Kohl is Herb's brother. That's part of why they got in on the Porter group, as Sidney and Allen Kohl were mutual friends of Porter, Schur, and Bud Selig. 

 

19 hours ago, coco1997 said:

Great identity and a great color scheme! The cap logos in particular for both the Florida and Tampa Bay versions are strong. 

He is indeed. For years Herb Kohl's Milk House was the highlight of the Wisconsin State Fair. Mmm, root beer flavored milk...

 

Thanks! I might have to try that some day.

 

9 hours ago, Yee Yee Go 'Stros! said:

Hi!  I think as a pun, a team called the ‘Whitecaps’ oughtta have literal white caps for their whole uniform... other than that, I think they’re amazing!  Keep up the good work, and MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!

 

Thank you. I was thinking about full-time white caps, but sweat stains meant that I didn't think they would be primary caps. They're better as alternates.

 

Merry Christmas to you too!

 

2 hours ago, Noir said:

Hey, what font are you using? I would love to use it for a concept

 

Ocean Beach Major, with a few tiny adjustments.

 

Anyway, it's time to finish off the Whitecaps!

 

FLORIDA/TAMPA BAY WHITECAPS, PT. II - Surfin' Scripts

 

This is basically my attempt to merge my Project 32 Tampa Bay Stingrays and (Sun)Rays concepts with the Whitecaps' identity. Light Blue is the primary color, with navy as a secondary shade. Silver gives way to extra light blue, for a bit of "wavier" look. I used a modified version of Seren Script by Type Faith Fonts for the wordmarks, paired with Caniste Semibold. The primary is a home plate, with both a large wave and small wave pattern (the latter coming from the Padres' 2004-10 primary logo), while the secondary is the cap insignia (which features a wave pattern). The tertiary is a roundel with the sock stripe and the founding date. Also, I’d like to send a big thank you to @MJD7 for his consult.

 

I'll model the Florida variant first.

 

WVwu30M.png

 

The home and road uniforms feature a rounded inset on the edge of the sleeve, designed to mimic a wave pattern. The scripts feature highlights on their tails, to tie them into the insignia and primary (which is on the sleeves). MLB Block with Serifs is the number font, paired with the Pittsburgh Penguins NoB font. The sock stripes mimic the multi-blue waves.

 

PvxxAjI.png

 

The alternates include a light blue jersey (featuring the tertiary logo on the sleeve) and a navy top with a navy-crowned, light blue-billed cap, navy accessories, and the insignia on the chest.

 

GQhzqJR.png

 

The white cap returns as an alternate for both home-only sets.

 

ZFxNGPw.png

 

The jacket features the wave pattern again, albeit with fewer sharp edges than the 1990s version.

 

fMJf9Fb.png

 

TAMPA BAY EDITION

 

The Tampa Bay version of the logo set is much the same, albeit with "Tampa Bay" replacing "Florida" in all instances. The "TB" insignia receives the same treatment as the "F" variant.

 

dckwRxF.png

 

The home and road set is much the same, just with the appropriate name swaps.

 

ITgf49Q.png

 

The alternates receive the same location swap.

 

AN0ki56.png

 

The second set of alternates now includes my attempt to homage the 1970s Tampa Tarpons and their distinctive font (as suggested by @Paul Lucas). Using this guide and this uniform to help form the lettering (as well as a bit of my Rainiers-style letters), I produced a "Tarpon-ized" take on the team in light blue/white.1

 

w9gXoIk.png

 

The dugout jackets now include a Tarpon-ized version to go along with the primary.

 

EEqrHoq.png HFCEwQa.png

 

It's got a "classically Floridian" vibe (e.g., the Miami Dolphins' vintage wordmark) with a slight modern edge, while also being unique within the NL East. While I like the 1990s-styled version, this one is much more fitting with my personal tastes for baseball design. C+C is appreciated, as always!

 

Merry Christmas, folks! May the yuletide season bring you joy.

 

fC4eBBqUNC4S.gif

 

(Spoilers: Father Ted Crilly didn't get a normal Christmas)

 

Up next, with expansion impossible, who will Tampa Bay get to relocate to the Suncoast Dome? Here's a hint: their organization can be described as a "shipwreck."

 

1 William F. Henderson, Game Worn Guide to MLB Jerseys: (1970–2017), Eighth (Philadelphia, PA: Aardvark Publishing, 2017), 2570.

 

 

Edited by SFGiants58

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A "textured" script tail like that with the waves inside the tail is a good idea that I can't recall seeing before. I like it a lot.

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Excellent work, brother. Loving that Tarponized set...all of the Whitecaps looks, for that matter. 

 

Also, that first TB Whitecaps monogram is maybe the best of all, love it! Merry Christmas!!!

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I love the updated Whitecaps! The original version definitely has that 90s feel, but your update gives me UNC vibes, which I will always love. The sleeves, sock stripes, and colors are all great. Merry Christmas!

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I think I actually prefer the '90s version of the Whitecaps, but the more modernized design looks great, too. 

 

Looking forward to the Tampa Bay Mariners! ;)

 

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How are you so good at this?   

There isn't a mediocre one in the bunch.  That being said, the Whitecaps are my favorite.  It looks Florida-y without going Marlins or Heat over the top.

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This is probably my favorite ever concept thread, and I’ve been scouring the internet for these things for nearly two decades. 

 

I’m pretty sure the last one that was my favorite ever thread was done by you as well. The attention to detail you put into these is staggering and I cannot even fathom the man-hours involved with all of this. This is truly a gift. Thank you. 

 

Do we still have/did we ever have a Hall of Fame thing for threads? I nominate this thread if we do. 

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On 12/25/2018 at 10:18 AM, the admiral said:

A "textured" script tail like that with the waves inside the tail is a good idea that I can't recall seeing before. I like it a lot.

 

Thanks. I've done it several times, such as my Brewers alternate take and the Tampa Bay Stingrays. It's surprising that nobody has done it, especially since it's an easy way to add a third color to a set.

 

On 12/25/2018 at 12:54 PM, Paul Lucas said:

Excellent work, brother. Loving that Tarponized set...all of the Whitecaps looks, for that matter. 

 

Also, that first TB Whitecaps monogram is maybe the best of all, love it! Merry Christmas!!!

 

Thank you! I rather like the Tarponized set.

 

On 12/25/2018 at 1:14 PM, MJD7 said:

I love the updated Whitecaps! The original version definitely has that 90s feel, but your update gives me UNC vibes, which I will always love. The sleeves, sock stripes, and colors are all great. Merry Christmas!

 

Thanks. I like both sets as well, but I have a slight preference for the light blue set.

 

On 12/26/2018 at 9:24 AM, coco1997 said:

I think I actually prefer the '90s version of the Whitecaps, but the more modernized design looks great, too. 

 

Looking forward to the Tampa Bay Mariners! ;)

 

Thanks. I'd like to think that both Whitecaps sets fit well with what I did for the other 1993 expansion teams.

 

pW4ksZQ.png

 

Nobody is really a White Sox clone anymore, with each team making use of a unique color scheme.

 

I'm sure you'll like the Tampa Bay Mariners! 

 

On 12/26/2018 at 11:03 AM, n312rb said:

How are you so good at this?   

There isn't a mediocre one in the bunch.  That being said, the Whitecaps are my favorite.  It looks Florida-y without going Marlins or Heat over the top.

 

Thank you! I'm glad you like the series. The Whitecaps are among my favorites as well, as I really enjoy that Florida-y aesthetic more than the "Hotline Miami" direction the Marlins and Heat went in. 

 

On 12/27/2018 at 5:07 PM, Bucfan56 said:

This is probably my favorite ever concept thread, and I’ve been scouring the internet for these things for nearly two decades. 

 

I’m pretty sure the last one that was my favorite ever thread was done by you as well. The attention to detail you put into these is staggering and I cannot even fathom the man-hours involved with all of this. This is truly a gift. Thank you. 

 

Do we still have/did we ever have a Hall of Fame thing for threads? I nominate this thread if we do. 

 

Thank you so much! I'm happy that you like the series, the research, and the artwork. It's been a lot of work, but it's necessary for telling a comprehensive story and maintaining the quality of my concepts. Thanks.

 

We did do a Hall of Fame-like event here (the Creamer Awards) a while back, but interest waned after a year or so. 

 

Anyway, the Tampa Bay Mariners will be up later today!

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TAMPA BAY MARINERS – Anchored in Athletic Gold

 

Tampa Bay Sweepstakes Introduction

 

After the expansion bid failed, Rick Dodge & Co. began their pursuit of a relocating team. Florida Progress (utility company) chairman Jack Critchfield paired up with Dodge’s team to organize a “The Game’s Not Over” initiative to show interest and scout out potential investors. Out of all the teams in both the AL and NL, the one that made the most sense to move was the Seattle Mariners.1

 

Norman Caruso of the YouTube channel Gaming Historian covered this story on his channel (reuploaded, due to a C&D by MLB):

 

 

Born in 1977, out of Seattle’s lawsuit following the move of the Pilots, the Mariners didn’t have an easy go of it. Lackluster ownership produced a team with poor attendance that didn’t have a winning season until 1991. Not helping the team at the gate was the Kingdome, a poorly-designed venue ill-suited for baseball. In the bright Seattle summers, the Kingdome was a dark, dingy pit. If the Kingdome had a leitmotif, it’d be “Down in a Hole” by Alice in Chains.

 

Relocation was not a new proposal for the team. Frank Morsani had investigated the opportunity with Mariners owner George Argyros in 1985, but not much came of it.2 Radio magnate Jeff Smulyan, the subsequent owner, consistently lost money on the team. A memo from Seattle’s Security Pacific Bank in 1991 (concerning a $39 million loan) leaked to the media, bluntly stating that Smulyan could only repay his loan if he sold or moved the team. The letter’s fallout lead Jerry Reinsdorf and Bud Selig to recommend a St. Petersburg move.3

 

Smulyan contacted Dodge and Critchfield to begin lease negotiations. News of the talks emerged, stirring worries about relocation. However, Smulyan announced that he was putting the team up for sale for $100 million on December 6, 1991, with local buyers having a 120-day exclusivity period (due to a clause in the Kingdome lease). Dodge, Critchfield, and Smulyan drafted a lease agreement and came up with a plan to reduce Smulyan’s personal stake in the team, introducing local investors like Mark Bostick (a former Morsani partner) and Vincent Naimoli (that name will become important later).4

 

Investors in Seattle used that 120-day period to put together a consortium. Under the direction of Sen. Slade Gordon, Nintendo president Hiroshi Yamauchi/Seattle-based Nintendo of America became the majority stakeholder (60%) in the investor group known as The Baseball Club of Seattle. While Smulyan was happy to accept the deal (albeit still working with Dodge in case it fell through), it took some time for Major League Baseball to get on board with it.5

 

PX38XNf.png D2pyc13.png

(Images from Stadium for Rent) 6

 

Commissioner Fay Vincent’s initial opposition to the deal was not surprising. Anti-Japanese sentiment was high in the United States, due to Japanese industries overtaking American ones and controversial comments from Japanese politicians.7 Baseball’s rules prohibited non-North American investors from holding the majority share in a baseball team (the rules were the same in Japan). The group responded by reducing Yamauchi’s stake to 49%, replacing Nintendo of America president Minoru Arakawa with Puget Sound Power & Light chairman John Ellis as the group’s spokesperson, and launching a PR campaign to stress Nintendo’s role in the region’s economy (to counteract negative PR about gambling ties). With these tweaks in mind, Vincent and MLB accepted Nintendo’s purchase on July 1, 1992. 8

 

TL;DR or TL;DW – Mario as The Baseball Club of Seattle and the pachinko spikes as the Dodge/Critchfield and anti-Japanese sentiments.Source

 

J3VsF0s.gif

 

But what if the deal wasn’t redone? What if Smulyan moved the team under the cover of night?

 

I figured that the team would have undergone a redesign for the 1993 season, much like they did in our timeline. However, they wouldn’t introduce teal, as teal was associated with Huizenga’s Marlins. Instead, the team would pull a dark-n-fade on their boring 1987-92 uniforms, with royal giving way to navy and metallic gold supplanting yellow. The Mariners would probably turn that metallic gold back to yellow (along with a darker gold) around 2006-09, for a thoroughly nautical look.

 

The font and anchor designs are from my Project 32 Mariners concepts, albeit with the scripts in a “rise” distort pattern instead of a vertical arch. I thought it conveyed a wave pattern a bit more. The primary features an anchor on a baseball diamond, while the secondary is the cap logo (an interlocking “TB” with the anchor inserted through the “B”). The tertiary is a combination of the anchor and wordmark.

 

EDIT: At the recommendation of @MJD7, I replaced the grey shade on the jerseys with my powder-tinted grey. Original image here.

 

gDZnkbw.png

 

These home and road uniforms carry over traits of my previous Mariners concepts, such as a trident on the pants and contrast-billed caps. Their sleeves feature the primary logo. The original image is here.

 

kpn3qAa.png

 

The alternates include a yellow-gold jersey and a navy top. The tertiary is on the home alt’s sleeve. The original image is here.

 

TWYX4Kl.png

 

These Mariners fauxbacks include a 1961 Tampa Tarpons-inspired jersey and a recreation of the 1977-80 Mariners’ home uniforms. They’re not full throwbacks, as I opted to add some enhancements for “player comfort,” such as a buttonfront jersey and belted pants. It looked a bit more dignified that way. I traced the Mariners' display font from Bill Henderson's book.9 

 

ia1sv7L.png

 

My outerwear designs include a white-sleeved primary jacket that mimics the sock striping, features a shoulder stripe, and uses the “Tampa Bay” wordmark. The 1970s fauxback is a recreation of this jacket. The original primary jacket is here.

 

2q837FN.png gzIF23H.png

 

While the Mariners moving would have been terrible for baseball (no SoDo Field, no Pacific Northwest team, and no amazing teal-billed caps), the squad could still have shaken up their identity for a unique look. C+C is appreciated, as always!

 

Up next, we take a brief detour to the South Bay. 

 

Bob Andelman and Lori Parsells, Stadium For Rent: Tampa Bay’s Quest for Major League Baseball, 2nd edition (St. Petersburg, FL: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform, 2015), 269–71, 307.

2 Ibid, 282; Frank Morsani and Dave Scheiber, To Be Frank: Building the American Dream in Business and Life (Tampa, FL: BlackWood Books, 2015), 127.

3 Andelman and Parsells, Stadium For Rent, 277–80.

4 Ibid, 282–88, 302–7; Ron Judd, “Bail-Out? Floridians All Smiles for Smulyan,” The Seattle Times, August 24, 1991, sec. Northwest.

5 Andelman and Parsells, Stadium For Rent, 307–10; Norman Caruso, Foreign Owned Nintendo & The Seattle Mariners - Gaming Historian - YouTube, Gaming Historian (Gaming Historian, 2016), https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gHqg8FEpXac.

6 Andelman and Parsells, Stadium For Rent, 201, 308.

7 Andelman and Parsells, Stadium For Rent, 309; Blaine Newnham, “Hey, Fay: Just Give It a Try,” The Seattle Times, January 24, 1992, sec. News; Wire Services, “Baseball,” The Tampa Tribune, January 11, 1992, sec. Sports.

8 Andelman and Parsells, Stadium For Rent, 307–12; Caruso, Foreign Owned Nintendo & The Seattle Mariners - Gaming Historian - YouTube.

9 William F. Henderson, Game Worn Guide to MLB Jerseys: (1970–2017), Eighth (Philadelphia, PA: Aardvark Publishing, 2017), 3428.

Edited by SFGiants58
I updated the images and intro links.

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Nice job, and worth the wait as always! The logos and scripts all look strong. I love the shoulder stripes on the dugout jacket! 

 

I am curious how the set would look in the M's' original blue and gold, as that would feel more "Mariners" in my opinion. 

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