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Pitching Names For New Texas Baseball Team

June 1st, 2018 · Tags:Cities · Satire · Sports


What’s in a name?

I know people. And some of those people like to name things … imaginary rock bands and maybe a country band name or two. My most recent, Tire Swing … I digress.

One’s name, or brand is important … trying to exalt your name above all names (of your competitors that is).

Geez … sports teams are no different. They need a great name — strong/fierce, perhaps an animal or a bird of prey, something with geographical or historical significance. Some sports names have a sense of humor too.

Case in point, my college roommate’s intramural football team was called Vomit & The Groceries. I never heard the story behind that name, and I don’t think I want to know. I digress …

All this is leading up to, I want to name it with you (reference to an old rock band, simply called Bread) …

So … today, a lot of us are playing the name game because of a new Texas League baseball team coming to Amarillo, Texas. The team’s power brokers (Pawn Brokers is taken) decided to have an online contest to name the team. Participants were invited to visit a special Website and contribute, for a chance at season tickets, etc. When the deadline passed, the team posted the five “best” options for people to vote. Keep in mind, many minor league team names have a creative sense of humor and the most zany special events.

Conference on the mound … In my PR career, several times clients considered contests to let their customers name a product. Great idea to engage their target audience … however … however, you must be prepared to accept the results!

Please tell me this is some brilliant, guerrilla stunt … kind of like the bogus introduction of “New Coke” to draw attention away from a slight change in the soft drink’s original recipe, back in the day. (Oh by the way, speaking of guerrilla … Did you know the Trent, Texas high school mascot is The Trent Gorillas? Love that! Why!?!)



Ha … some really weak pop song playing at Starbucks now has inspired me “The GiddyUps.” I digress …

So without further adieu. The powers that be in Amarillo say these are the best they have to show for their efforts:

(Ha … perhaps the front runner) The Sod Poodles, which they say is an old nickname for a prairie dog … ANYONE ever heard that before? Anyone? It begs the question, was Prairie Dogs already taken, so they had to go with a prairie dog alias?

Then there is the Amarillo Boot Scooters … no doubt the team would run onto the field as the PA system belted out George Strait’s better-known, lesser-quality version of the old Terry Stafford hit — “Amarillo By Morning.” Hmm … morning or mourning? In the ’60s the best band in The Texas Panhandle was The Undertakers … I wonder if they would give up the rights for the baseball team to be The Undertakers. It might come in handy if the team was “in the cellar” … I digress …

Anyone ever borrow the cartoon name, The Underdogs???

Another of the “Top 5” — Amarillo Long Haulers … no comment, “Good Buddy.” Hmmm … all the real cowboys I know call it “Bull Haulers.”

By the way, if one of the final options was your entry, my apologies and I hope there is a cure for your condition.

Then there’s Amarillo Bronc Busters … I guess you break a horse, but you bust a bronc, but you can’t make him drink … and you can’t tuna fish … meh.

And last, but not least, Amarillo Jerky … I think someone just wanted to have Sasquatch as the bleacher creature mascot. (See jerky TV commercials …) Careful not to abbrev. and get in a legal entanglement with Steve Martin. Can you imagine the jerk-laden, off-color derivatives for creative hecklers?

So anywho, this name game is all over social media … and I don’t think people are “laughing with” Amarillo … if you know what I mean. This makes me sad. I love the place and especially its more-rugged Texans. But … you really wonder why the rest of the state ignores the actual north Texas?  On the other hand, in Amarillo’s defense, here in the Metroplex we have one of the world’s richest men who did excellent re-branding of the old, tired Dallas Mavericks.  The new look, color and logo are very dynamic.  One problem:  The Dallas Mavericks’ logo is now a horse, but a maverick is a young bull.  Close.


Could I do better? I don’t know … but I thought I did. But for me, there is “no joy in Mudville.” I was distraught that there will be no season tickets for me … “Casey struck out” so to speak. Hmmm … does minor league baseball have a Mud Daubers team? Wish I had thought of that, so it too could have been overruled.

Mud Daubers update:

My actual entries:

The Amarillo Cadillacs or Amarillo Caddies (shortened if needed, to get around potential lawsuits). Let’s face it. Love it or not, The Cadillac Ranch put Amarillo on the worldwide map. Visit it sometime and just count the European tourists at the art installment out near old Route 66, The Mother Road … Ha … I almost said “Mother Lode,” the name of the first bar I ever went to … over in New Mexico … And hey, if an Argentinian ska band can be The Fabulous Cadillacs … then surely Amarillo can be The Caddies. You do know The Fabulous Cadillacs and their video “Matador,” right? Crud. Adrian, Texas already beat Amarillo to the name Matadors

Man I love this video … even though I speak little Argentinian, I understand this video better than the Amarillo name selection process:

Speaking of Mother Roads and Mother Lodes, one of my other entries was The Amarillo 66ers … like a smaller version of The 76ers … ha no … to pay homage to Route 66 … the most famous road in the world that ran smack dab through A-Town … The road where rock bands went to “get their kicks.” I delight in the fact that even The Rolling Stones covered the old Route 66 song … and I gotta tell you, no offense George, but no one sings “Amarillo” like Ol’ Mick Jagger! The trouble with this name — The 66ers — surely someone smarter and faster has already claimed it … I am Googling. Crud. It figures. There is a team in the Dodgers system called the Inland Empire 66ers … pretty catchy that first part … out in San Bernardino. Factoid — Ken Griffey Jr. played for the team briefly, when it was still called The Spirit. In addition, the team has also been affiliated with The Seattle Mariners … that explains the Griff part … sounds like a personality crisis to me, Buster.

I take some comfort in knowing 66ers was already taken. Nothing new under the …

How about The Amarillo Adobes — nickname Dobies? … NO … not Doobies … that’s a different tune. One of, if not the most famous battles in Texas Panhandle history were the two Battles Of Adobe Walls, the second pitting Quanah Parker and his tribe vs. soldiers and buffalo hunters, led by a long-ball hitter named Dixon. Good stuff … Dobies. Imagine that in baseball font … and remember The Texas Plains had few trees, so most early settlers lived in DUGOUTS (see what I did there?,) sheltered with adobe or sod brick … Sodbusters would be better than poodles, I have to think.

But like I was saying, the historic battle was a double header. Here is the story of The Second Battle of Adobe Walls:

Adobe Walls Battle

A friend pointed out that minor league baseball has a storied history of crazy names to draw attention. I am okay with that … but there is crazy creative … and really stupid. Yes, we all know there is a Mudhen in baseball lore … And I think no one will ever top the Albuquerque Isotopes celebrating the rich New Mexico history in the atomic weapons race. (Did they inspire the band name Uranium Savages?)  Hmmm … Amarillo has a piece of that history too, since “Bomb City” as many call it, is the final assembly point for U.S. nuclear devices at Pantex. What about Panhandlers … too easy? Ha … or “Manhandlers” if that is even allowable in this new, woman culture.

There is a movement afoot on Facebook to name the team The Ospreys, logically, because that innovative helicopter is also produced in Amarillo. It’s not real creative, but it makes a lot of sense.

WHO were the judges?