RoughRiders99

Minor League Baseball team names

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Had a convo with a friend of mine about minor league team names and it led me to look up a list of team names. 

After a few minutes of looking around, I realized something: most of them aren't that bad. Some of them could sound very Major League-ish (Louisville Bats, Durham Bulls, Arkansas Travelers). The only things that I'm not a fan of is how so many teams are adding adjective to their names (Jumbo Shrimps, Rumble Ponies, Fire Frogs, etc.). If they dropped those adjectives and kept the noun, then most of them would be much better, IMO. And sometimes, some logos that are over-designed can make the team name look bad (like most of Brandoise's stuff, or some teams that haven't upgraded their logos in YEARS).

 

I'd consider myself fairly traditionalist when it come to team names, but like I said earlier, most of the MiLB team names are fine if they just drop the adjectives.  


For the record, some of my favorite names include, but not limited to: Montgomery Biscuits, Durham Bulls, Asheville Tourists, Toledo Mud Hens, Las Vegas 51s, El Paso Chihuahuas, Reno Aces. 
 

What do you think? Do you think Minor League team names are fine with what they are now, or are they becoming too outrageous for your taste? Should they stay a little more conservative, or do you think they should become more crazy? 
 

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1 hour ago, poser said:

I dislike sharing with the parent club more than any "out there" name.

 

This times a thousand.

 

Another hate of mine is the club having no link to the name that they give themselves, like an inland team being the Sharks etc.

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I personally like the "charm" of the slightly goofier names-it's something unique to minor-league baseball.  With there being so many teams, lots of teams are in cities that, let's be honest, don't have the same cultural elements as pro teams that lend themselves to "good" names.  As a result, some teams really dig into something not considered normal fodder for a name.  Or some of them just go with something a bit related to the city/region and a bit goofy.

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At this point in the thread, it's an unpopular opinion, but I prefer a minor league team sharing their name with their affiliated major league team than those "out there" names...if we're comparing the Jacksonville Jumbo Shrimp and New Orleans Baby Cakes to the Springfield Cardinals and Grand Junction Rockies, anyways.

 

Don't get me wrong, I prefer a unique, tasteful (pun intended) name and then a variation of the major league name (such as the Memphis Redbirds) over the latter two. However, it's sometimes fun to to see a minor-league team be named for and dress like their big-league counterpart to show different lines of thinking between different teams in a minor league and to allow the minor-league team to apply some local flavor to the big league identity.

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I'm always for something different, but durable.  "Durham Bulls" is an example of that.  "Jacksonville Suns" was an example of that.  "Columbus Clippers" is an example.  "Nashville Sounds" is as well.

 

But what is the shelf life of some of these Brandiose-inspired names?  10 years, maybe 15?  Yes, going with a Montgomery Biscuits is going to seem clever and sell a lot of merch initially.  But does anyone here think that come 2050 the Jacksonville Jumbo Shrimp will still be the Jacksonville Jumbo Shrimp?

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3 hours ago, Mac the Knife said:

I'm always for something different, but durable.  "Durham Bulls" is an example of that.  "Jacksonville Suns" was an example of that.  "Columbus Clippers" is an example.  "Nashville Sounds" is as well.

 

But what is the shelf life of some of these Brandiose-inspired names?  10 years, maybe 15?  Yes, going with a Montgomery Biscuits is going to seem clever and sell a lot of merch initially.  But does anyone here think that come 2050 the Jacksonville Jumbo Shrimp will still be the Jacksonville Jumbo Shrimp?

I can see changing of goofy nicknames — Jumbo Shrimp to Train Whistles to Weasel Butts — happening constantly because of the need to sell more merchandise in the minor leagues. 

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29 minutes ago, kimball said:

I can see changing of goofy nicknames — Jumbo Shrimp to Train Whistles to Weasel Butts — happening constantly because of the need to sell more merchandise in the minor leagues. 

 

Agreed.  Just like BFBS. 

 

And like BFBS, merchandising concerns are a negative force in most cases. 

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4 hours ago, CaliforniaGlowin said:

Some of them are too silly for my tastes, but I'll take original names over Cardinals and Mets any day. 

 

I'm SORTA that way, but I prefer a nickname related to the parent team -- case in point, Memphis Redbirds -- if the team goes that way.

 

But, give me sane local nicknames over the messy trend of today.

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9 hours ago, kimball said:

I can see changing of goofy nicknames — Jumbo Shrimp to Train Whistles to Weasel Butts — happening constantly because of the need to sell more merchandise in the minor leagues. 

 

8 hours ago, Gothamite said:

Agreed.  Just like BFBS.  And like BFBS, merchandising concerns are a negative force in most cases. 

Precisely.  I understand the need to generate revenue through merch sales, and doing that can involve implementing new elements over time, updating old ones on a regular schedule, changing color schemes if you can, and other methods.  But to "Brandiose" your team is to openly admit to your (sometimes long standing) fan base, "We're here to make money off of you and this is a way of doing it."  And no matter how clever you do it, no matter how much overall merch you actually sell from it (no one here will deny that the Jacksonville Jumbo Shrimp are moving product better than the Jacksonville Suns ever did), there's a portion of your actual fan base - the people who show up and buy tickets to your games, the people you rely on for repeat revenue - who you alienate with total rebrands.  It's inevitable.

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I guess I'm more about branding than the actual name.  RP is dumb but at least they have their own identity. I wouldn't mind a duplicate team name if the colors were unique. But taking the Mets and just changing the city and altering the logo seems lazy to me.

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There are so few MILB clubs that take the nickname from the parent left that this feels like a moot point. I would say though that I always felt that the teams that did that well — the Pawtucket Red Sox sorts of the world — always managed to keep that link with the parent while also building their own thing simultaneously. And probably a smart way, in many areas, for that parent club to build a fanbase outside of their usual home zone. I don’t see that as lazy or evil, necessarily.

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Well in general, I like ball clubs with their own names as it gives them better opportunities to make sales on merch and marketing. Although, the visual identity plays a very important part to me. I wouldn't have an issue if they had the same name as their affiliate, but I'd like them to be creative about their look instead of copying and editing their logo. The South Bend Cubs and the Memphis Redbirds (who also have a different name variation) is the way to go. The Iowa Cubs and the (former) Tampa Yankees are just lame.

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For the most part, I prefer MiLB teams to have unique names. But the trends I'm seeing lately actually make me want more big league hand me downs.

 

Though I don't mind when MiLB clubs in their parent team's market play big league dress up (Paw Sox, SI Yankees, and San Jose Giants come to mind). I still prefer they adopt their own identity related to the parent club. I'd be here for the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers becoming the Wisconsin Micro Brews.

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A team name should be their brand. What Nic was saying, It should be somewhat professional and creative.If you cant guess the team I am all for it with a good name you need good branding

 

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I know that in my neck of the woods you have identities that are well known to this area (Tacoma Rainiers, Everett Aqua Sox, Hillsboro Hops, Vancouver Canadians, etc.) and that works. I feel that if you are going to change things up, you want to change it to something that is local and well known to the local fan base.

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My 02. These guys may be professional, but most people only view pros as if you’re in the big leagues. It’s more like some entertainment and can be downright goofy with all the promotions so why not have a goofy name? Also, these teams change their identities often with rebranding, new affiliations, Spanish nights, what if nights, food names,etc. personally, I like pro looks and names like the bulls or aces, but I’m ok with fire frogs cause it’s unique and they play in front of 1000 people looking to watch a game with a dollar beer and a 5000 calorie burger for ten bucks.

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I know it's not baseball, but the structure of the Los Angeles Kings' former farm system was always one of my favourites.

 

Los Angeles KINGS

Manchester MONARCHS

Reading ROYALS

 

Themed, professional names, with the last two even being alliterated. Solid effort across the board.

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