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MLB: The Defunct Saga - Miami Gators (fictional) Added


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13 hours ago, SFGiants58 said:



I think you got it on this update! Looks great! I also like that, with an alternate cap, the green jersey could act as a semi-fauxback to a pre-NO era.


Also, the Pirates look good in Saints colors, though a bit too dark (maybe it's just my screen?) I like @coco1997's mention of the Mustard color Pirates, so the gold is certainly precedented.


Also, the Denver Pirates sounds odd, but I look forward to seeing it!

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1 hour ago, vtgco said:

I think you got it on this update! Looks great! I also like that, with an alternate cap, the green jersey could act as a semi-fauxback to a pre-NO era.


Also, the Pirates look good in Saints colors, though a bit too dark (maybe it's just my screen?) I like @coco1997's mention of the Mustard color Pirates, so the gold is certainly precedented.


Also, the Denver Pirates sounds odd, but I look forward to seeing it!


Thanks! I too thought the gold was a little dark, but that's what happens when you use metallic shades in digital formats. I did want to do a metallic gold with black outline version, but I thought it was too much of a departure from the Pirates' established look. Just because it works for the Saints doesn't mean it works for the Pirates.


6 hours ago, neo_prankster said:

I bet the Denver Pirates will make as much sense as the Los Angeles Lakers or Utah Jazz.


It's not as odd as you'd think. Back when Denver was just a "mountain town," there were plenty of raiders and bandits who could be considered "pirates." Not the traditional "yo ho ho" pirates or "Barbary Corsair" pirates, but pirates nonetheless. It makes more sense than Lakers or Jazz. 


11 hours ago, Dan O'Mac said:

A yes to all the New Orleans Pirates looks!




13 hours ago, coco1997 said:

WOW, I love the New Orleans Pirates in Saints colors. Sort of reminds me of the early '70s "mustard" Bucs. 

I think you finally nailed the New Orleans A's in your latest update. Just goes to show how tough it is to balance those three colors, especially when you make the rule that two of them can't touch. 


Looking forward to the Denver Pirates later!


Thanks! I'm very happy with how both updates/variants turned out. I'm glad I stuck to my "no double outlines" rule, as it really allowed me to get creative with color blocking while not compromising visual fidelity.


Anyway, let's head on up to the mountains!


DENVER PIRATES -  As good as gold


We pick up a few years after the New Orleans bluff, in 1985. The Pirates are still a mess, with problems on the field (two straight 84-78 seasons in 1983-84, followed by a 75-87 season in 1984 and a 57-104 year in '85), with attendance (773,500 in '84 and 735,900 in '85 - reasons explained in this  Sports Illustrated article), and with a certain set of trials. I'll let Alfred Molina playing a fictionalized Eddie Nash (a scary M'Fer, even when strung out) sum it up:




The drug trials of '85-'86 have been the subject of several books and documentaries (including a 30 for 30 short film).1 These involved Pirates players, athletes from other teams (e.g., Keith Hernandez), and even the team mascot!2 Needless to say, the Pirates' owners (the Galbreaths) wanted to sell the team for $40 million. They entertained offers from several outside buyers, such as the Denver Zephyrs' owners, the Dikeou brothers (John, George, and Dino). Marvin Davis, who once considered buying the A's, also expressed interest.These owners would have moved the team to Denver if they bought the team. However, the Pittsburgh Associates group (made up of several corporations) bought the team for $22 million and began the process of turning the club's fortunes around with the help of manager Jim Leyland and left fielder Barry Lamar Bonds.4 However, what if either set of Denver buyers bought the team? How would the Pirates have adapted to their mountain setting?


Again, I ran with the attitude that the Pirates were a "glamour"/"legacy" team that would only receive minor modifications to their look. Since Denver had its fair share of bandits comparable to pirates, the name would still work. The same applied to the color scheme, as Denver had a particularly prominent gold rush (Pike's Peak Gold Rush).5 I figured that sharing a division with the Giants would inspire them to differentiate their color balance a bit more, adopting a black/yellow-gold co-dominant color scheme in their traditional font (which is a little "rock-y"). Moving to Coors Field would bring in the adoption of a proprietary number font, as well as a new set of logos to reflect the team's new home.


The primary combines the mountain pattern of Denver's flag with the baseball Jolly Roger from my previous concepts. It also uses a colorway that mimics the sock stripes of the uniforms. The secondary is the cap logo, while the tertiary is the jolly baseball roger on its own.




The home and road uniforms push the co-balance approach. Black/yellow-gold/black striping appears throughout, while the lettering is yellow-gold with black outlines. I opted to invert the 1970-76 sock stripes to reflect the new color balance. NoB's are contrast-colored, for legibility reasons. I put gold bills on the caps, for a bit of flair.




The alternates feature a few fun tricks. These include a yellow-crowned cap on the yellow jersey (bearing the "D" insignia), as well as a deconstructed version of the primary logo on the sleeves of the black jersey.




The second set of alts pairs the yellow-crowned cap with the home uniform, while also resurrecting the Roberto Clemente Day alternate from my New Orleans Pirates concept.




The jacket brings back the script, while emphasizing the striping pattern on the sleeves.




The Pirates' identity adapts well to the Rocky Mountains. While I'm glad the move didn't happen (and that the majors can have Coors Field and PNC Park), I like the way the aesthetic turned out. I also like the question of the Mile High Effect weighing on Barry Bonds' Hall of Fame candidacy. C+C is appreciated, as always!


Up next, a new style of concept for this series. It's a combination of failed expansion, relocation, and a debrief on territory rights/demographics!


AP, “Pittsburgh Drug Trial May Take Mets’ Hernandez, Reds’ Parker,” The Palm Beach Post, September 3, 1985. https://www.newspapers.com/clip/11070384/pittsburgh_drug_trial/

2 Craig Neff, “The Pirates Are Strictly The Pits,” Sports Illustrated, September 9, 1985. https://www.si.com/vault/1985/09/09/628076/the-pirates-are-strictly-the-pits

3 Gary Reinmuth, “Pirates Talking to Denver Bidders,” Chicago Tribune, June 28, 1985, https://www.chicagotribune.com/news/ct-xpm-1985-06-28-8502120180-story.html.

4 Alan Robinson, “Pittsburgh Pirates Sold to Mayor, Steel City Businesses,” AP NEWS, accessed November 8, 2018, https://apnews.com/5d21c423c559d25b5c37f187b832e496.

5 Jolie Anderson Gallagher, A Wild West History of Frontier Colorado: Pioneers, Gunslingers & Cattle Kings on the Eastern Plains (Charleston, SC: The History Press, 2011), 18, 36, and 69. 

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  • SFGiants58 changed the title to MLB: The Defunct Saga - Denver Pirates Added
On 11/4/2018 at 6:15 PM, SFGiants58 said:

NEW ORLEANS PIRATES - Bourbon Street Buccos


With the construction of PNC Park and the constant praise of it as the best stadium in the majors (I haven’t been, but I don’t dispute it), it seems bizarre that the team was on the brink of moving several times in the 1980s. Of course, when you look at the combination of ownership turmoil and Three Rivers Stadium’s shoddiness, it does make sense. Let's let Captain Jack Sparrow sum it up:




This first relocation attempt appeared in 1981, when team president Dan Galbreath met with Superdome officials to discuss moving there if the lease didn’t improve in the latest negotiation (the Three Rivers Stadium lease, signed in 1971, was due to expire that year).1 The Pirates got a better lease in Pittsburgh, so the deal fell through. Their blackmail had worked. However, what if Pittsburgh called the team’s bluff and the Pirates moved to New Orleans? What if the team managed to downgrade from Three Rivers Stadium, eventually finding their way to a taxpayer-funded baseball-only park (ugh)? 


I figured the brand wouldn’t change all that much, given that the Pirates are a legacy team and that pirates conducted business at the Port of New Orleans in the 18th-19th centuries (see Jean Lafitte).2 The colors also wouldn’t change, as they’d be a non-metallic version of the Saints. 

The primary logo is an adaptation of the nearly-departed New Orleans AAA club’s alternate, with the jolly roger from my Project 32 concept. The new “NO” cap logo appears on the crest, as well as baseballs and three fleur-de-lis (a la the New Orleans flag). The secondary is the cap logo, while the tertiary is a wrought-iron roundel. (Original image here, thanks @coco1997 for the suggestion to adjust the "New Orleans" wordmark  - Comparison here)




The uniforms have the same sconce pattern seen on the New Orleans A’s (sleeves and socks), albeit with two colors instead of three. The lettering is the same style as the current Pirates, albeit with the team-specific font for NoB’s. I figured it’d set them apart here, while still being legible. Collar and pants stripes are black/yellow-gold/black, to tie into the sleeves. (Original image in the link.)




The first set of alternates includes a yellow-gold jersey, with a gold-billed cap and the early-1970s dugout jacket script. Thank you, @Paul Lucas for turning me onto it. The black alt uses the tertiary on the sleeve and one-color lettering. 




The second group of special event uniforms include a Roberto Clemente set that mimics the 1960 World Series uniforms, with the 1973 memorial patch above the wordmark. The Pelicans uniform from the A’s concept returns, marking one of the few times a team has thrown back to their own minor league affiliate (especially the oft-forgotten Southern Association). 




The jackets carry over different elements from my Pirates and New Orleans A’s concepts, including the entirety of the Pelicans jacket.


OuaydmM.png LRSm84W.png


The Pirates identity adapts well to New Orleans, with a bit of local flavor that enhances the look. C+C is appreciated, as always!


Up next, it’s up to the mountains.


1UPI, “Pirates Considering New Orleans Move,” Ellensburg Daily Record, April 24, 1981, https://news.google.com/newspapers?id=EwEyAAAAIBAJ&sjid=Ko8DAAAAIBAJ&pg=4526%2C2263727
2Joseph Geringer, “Jean Lafitte: Gentleman Pirate of New Orleans,” Crime Library, June 2, 2002, https://web.archive.org/web/20020602164142/http://crimelibrary.com/americana/lafitte/main.htm.

This might be my favorite concept in the entire series.  The Pirates brand works insanely well with New Orleans. And they'd be moving to a city where the established colors were still black and gold (albeit a slightly different shade).

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On 11/8/2018 at 8:16 AM, coco1997 said:

Great job on the Denver Pirates. I like the heavier emphasis on yellow.


Very interested to see what's coming next. I have a feeling we'll finally be seeing the Expos!


Thanks! I figured it'd be good to mix it up a bit.


The Expos will be aways away, with a "mini-sweepstakes" surrounding their relocation (as I've adjusted in the first post of the thread). I'm doing a few fun things with them (reposting what I did in Project 32, if I had to use one of the worst Big Four logos out there the "Melb," Royaux, and maybe the Washington Grays).


On 11/8/2018 at 3:46 PM, 1991 said:

Looks pretty good.




On 11/8/2018 at 6:30 PM, NicDB said:

This might be my favorite concept in the entire series.  The Pirates brand works insanely well with New Orleans. And they'd be moving to a city where the established colors were still black and gold (albeit a slightly different shade).


Thank you! I like it when the name and basic color scheme works in both locations. The one point against it is that the Pirates will be part of the Tampa Bay Sweepstakes, and it'll be a pain to brand them in a way to avoid copying the Buccaneers.


On 11/9/2018 at 12:58 PM, Dalcowboyfan92 said:

The Denver Pirates set is good, however; I'm not a fan of the stylized D. It just comes off as too plain, too generic, even with the style brought over from Pittsburgh.


Thanks, and I get where you're coming from. I didn't want a cluttered D or a cursive D (too much like the Dodgers), so I figured just keeping it in the team's font style would be the best option.


On 11/9/2018 at 4:20 PM, the admiral said:

I think you made the most of the Denver Pirates idea with the city flag inspiration, but that's one I wish had been a full-scale rebrand if it had happened, and we're all glad it ultimately didn't. I dig the Pirates in New Orleans, though, especially in old gold.


Thanks! I have an idea for what a full-scale rebrand would have been like:



The Purple/Light Blue/Silver Denver Zephyrs!



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MF5o35E.png xzcOCur.png



This is vastly preferable to Denver Pirates, IMHO. 


On 11/9/2018 at 8:09 PM, Raymie said:

This is a stellar series, as usual. Glad I spent hours reading through all of it!


Thanks, and congrats on reading through my often long-winded posts! Anyway, here's another long-winded post about one man's dream and how reality turned it into a fine powder.


INDIANAPOLIS ARROWS - Missing the target


Let's go back to 1982-84, a time in which the growing city of Indianapolis hit the sports jackpot. Bob Irsay just moved the Colts into the Hoosier Dome, which gave Mayor William C. Hudnut and investor Art Angotti an idea. Why not bring baseball to Naptown? He brought together a group of investors to propose an expansion team for the majors, named the Indianapolis Arrows because:



But Arrows? Said Angotti, "You go out and dig in the ground around here and you're not surprised to find an arrowhead. 'Arrows' fits right in."

And Binford added, "The name has mobility and forward thrust, just like the city."1


The group gathered 11,000 season ticket holders and drummed up interest around the area. They would play either in the Hoosier Dome or a baseball-only stadium (built in Plainfield or at the site of Victory Field in Indianapolis). They even had uniforms mocked up (posed with Angotti in 2005?




Things seemed to be looking up for them.2 However, big problems appeared almost immediately. These include:


1. The Hoosier Dome was ill-suited for baseball. It didn't have a built-in baseball configuration. An Old-Timer's Game at the stadium in 1984 featured a right field wall at 182 ft (55.4736 m) away from home plate, while NL officials found that a catwalk prevented center field from having a proper 320 ft. distance from home plate. There were also troubles with sliding pits, due to wiring under the stadium's concrete surface. Ventures for a baseball-only stadium didn't pan out, as Hudnut didn't have the political capital to push it forward after the Hoosier Dome.3  


2. I'll let this image sum up the problem:




Indianapolis is only 110 miles away from Cincinnati and 185 miles away from the Chicago teams, while also being within range of the Cardinals, Cleveland, Detroit, and Milwaukee. The Reds, Cubs, White Sox, and Cardinals all planned to oppose the expansion and potential relocation. Ultimately, expansion never materialized in the 1980s. The Arrows group refunded their deposits, while the group disbanded in 1988. No Indianapolis bids for expansion or relocation threats appeared in the 30 years since, especially after Victory Field's construction in 1996.4 However, what if the Hoosier Dome had been built with a baseball configuration and what if the local teams didn't oppose expansion in their territory?


I wanted to start from the ground up with the identity, only taking small cues from the trademarked  logos (namely the arrow under the wordmark). Other than that, I got rid of the ugly font, boring royal/red, and the A-rrowhead in favor of Metal Blackletter and black/red. I wanted to go for a modernized medieval look, with a typeface that emulated illuminated vellum manuscripts from the period. Black/red also works in the location for the AAA Indianapolis Indians, so I figured it'd work here as well.


The primary features the team insignia (an "I") on a baseball inside a roundel. The roundel features the wordmark, the "feathered" sock stripe pattern, and two arrows behind it. The arrows feature accent colors to mimic stabilizing feathers. The secondary is the insignia, while the tertiary is the uniform wordmark.


EDIT: I have adjusted the "I" to look more like a flared serif "I," per @QueenCitySwarm and @coco1997's suggestions. Here is the original image. Here is a comparison image.




The uniforms are fairly traditional, with double stripes on the sleeves and socks (the socks featuring the arrow feather pattern). The font is a modified version of the UNC Tar Heels' number font (from my Browns concept).


EDIT: I have replaced the "Indianapolis" script with a shorter, more legible "Indy" script, per @coco1997's suggestion. Here is the original.




The alts include a red jersey with a red-billed cap (and white feather with grey accents). There's also a black shirt with the "I" insignia.


EDIT: Adjustments were made to fit with the updates. Here is the original rendering.




The second set of alts pair the red-billed cap with the home uniform, while also presenting my attempt to emulate what the team's first blue jersey would have look like. I used TF Cavalier (same font the Dirk-era Dallas Mavericks use) to help recreate the set. I figured it'd be a fun recreation.


EDIT: The Sunday cap alternate now features the new "I." Here is the old one.




The jackets feature a few fun touches. The first one has shoulder trim pieces and arrow feather stripes on the sleeves, while the throwback has straight-up racing stripes.


EDIT: The primary jacket matches the new "I." Here is the original.


4YWf7AH.png SNhV7BB.png


While putting a major-league team in Indianapolis would have been a stupid idea (market saturation, growing importance of TV deals & territory, etc.), there was a lot of potential for a solid look. Heck, I wouldn't mind the name coming back should the Indianapolis Indians run into trouble with their Native American-sourced name. C+C is appreciated, as always!


Up next, we start the Tampa Bay Sweepstakes!


1 Gary Pomerantz, “Success of Colts Whets Indianapolis’ Craving for Baseball,” The Washington Post, May 30, 1985, https://www.washingtonpost.com/archive/sports/1985/05/30/success-of-colts-whets-indianapolis-craving-for-baseball/85735d59-b1fb-48a4-8e12-e6db97af57cf/.

2 Michael Pointer, “No Runs, No Hits, No Arrows,” The Indianapolis Star, July 8, 2005, 38, http://www.newspapers.com/newspage/127414714/; Pomerantz, "Success of Colts Whets Indianapolis’ Craving for Baseball."

3 Pointer, "No Runs, No Hits, No Arrows," 38; UPI, “Dome Not Suited for Baseball,” UPI, December 31, 1985, https://www.upi.com/Archives/1985/07/26/Dome-not-suited-for-baseball/5741491198400/.

4 Ibid, Pomerantz, "Success of Colts Whets Indianapolis’ Craving for Baseball;" UPI, “The Indianapolis Arrows, a Group Seeking a Major League...,” UPI, December 31, 1985, https://www.upi.com/Archives/1985/12/31/The-Indianapolis-Arrows-a-group-seeking-a-major-league/9845504853200/


Addendum: If you guys want to see a full recreation of the 1980s Arrows' logo set, here you go! Click the image for a high-resolution version:




That should un-lodge the Arrows from the rabbit hole of baseball history.


Edited by SFGiants58
I updated the images to reflect the new "I" insignia.
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  • SFGiants58 changed the title to MLB: The Defunct Saga - Indianapolis Arrows Added

Wow! The Arrows look great, the only thing I have an issue with is the "I" insignia. I just can't for the life of me, see it as an "I". The extra part on the right is really throwing me off, so I think getting rid of it might help. Aside from that, they look pretty good, though I have to say I'd prefer a completely modernized set based on the concept uniforms. 

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I agree with @QueenCitySwarm; the insignia doesn't immediately read as an "I." How about making the logo an "A" as was planned with those '80s mock-ups? I guess the problem you might run into with that is it might move them too close to the Braves, with whom the Arrows would have hypothetically shared a division...On second thought, maybe just try modifying the "I." 


My other nitpick is with the road wordmark. "Indianapolis" just seems too unwieldy to work on the front of a jersey. It also makes the arrow underneath too long and thin. How about just "Indy" instead?


Those small gripes aside, this is another excellent creation. Excited for the Tampa Bay sweepstakes, especially the TB White Sox!

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Blackletter is always a valiant attempt at getting around the limitations of the letter I, it works wonders for O, but I think it needs a top and a bottom to read as an I.


It's hard for me to get too much into the "character" of the city of Indianapolis, but black and red somehow feels too dour for an Indianapolis team, especially on grey. My experience with Indianoplace is that it's not quite as German and old-stock as Milwaukee, St. Louis, and Cincinnati. It just is. I don't know what color palette would best reflect their just-is-ness.


Those original Arrows designs have aged like a banana in the sun, I think we can agree on that.

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1 hour ago, the admiral said:

Those original Arrows designs have aged like a banana in the sun, I think we can agree on that.

You mean you don't like gaudy, bright racing stripes and a wordmark that looks like it was designed in two minutes?

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  • SFGiants58 changed the title to MLB: The Defunct Saga - Miami Gators (fictional) Added

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