Since their move from Denver in 1993, the New Orleans Zephyr always used the name of the club that moved from Denver, when the Rockies became the city’s MLB representative.
The Zephyr was a train in the Colorado area and that name was adopted by the Denver
Bears in 1985. Before the team moved to Denver, the team was founded in Kansas City, where it was forced to move when the Philadelphia Athletics came to town in 1955.
In 1997 the Zephyrs moved to the Pacific Coast League as the American Association folded for the second time.
For years the Zephyrs had a logo that cannot really be explained in combination with the name of the club. A nutria (river rat or beverrat in Dutch). The mascot is still a nutria because it was hard to replace it with something else.
In 2009 the team opted for the current logo which hinted to the Fleur de Lys of New Orleans / Louisiana.
The new owners of the club announced that they will be looking for a new identity in 2017. As 2017 will be the team’s 25th year in the Big Easy, the owner finally want a name that is more fitting to the city.
With the help of Brandiose from San Diego, a ports marketing company which has been involved in countless rebranding efforts for many minor league teams, the Zephyrs will start an online “Name the Team” campaign on April 25 which will last until May 6.
Starting Monday, fans are encouraged to go to zephyrsbaseball.com and submit their nomination for the team’s new identity, accompanied by an explanation of why they feel their suggestion is typical New Orleans. The top choices will be entered into a contest to vote for the new team name, with the winner being announced next fall.
Of course there is a nice price package that can be won by the contestants: 2-4 full season tickets for 2017, a game in a luxury suite and a ceremonial first pitch, among other prizes.