There is a lot at play here. In the end I'm applauding New Orleans and shaking my head at the Yankees. As a Yankee fan I don't know which way my bias takes me.
Weird and funny mascots are all the rage in the minor leagues. You've got the Sand Gnats, The Dust Devils, The Nuts, The Tin Caps, The Yard Goats and many more. So New Orleans changing from the Zephyrs to the Baby Cakes was a no brainer. Zephyrs probably sounded new age and cool twenty years ago. Now it sounds corporate and boring. The general manager has said the name change has paid off big already. It sparked a fire on the internet and they've sold a ton of merch because people love silly things.
A little under two months after the Baby Cakes announcement the RailRiders announce this alternate jersey. They changed from the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Yankees to the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders in 2013 and I think they are regretting not changing to a more fun nickname than the RailRiders. At the time the fans and town voted for The Porcupines but I guess management got scared and balked. They went with RailRiders and used a porcupine as their logo. It's a terrible logo IMO. The real problem is the identifier. Scranton/Wilkes-Bar? You can't have a slash and a dash in your team name. They should change it to the Lackawanna RailRiders. That is much more fun to say.
I don't know how much say The Yankees have in their affiliates team names but it's got to be tough to be part of a franchise that is famous and known for having "no frills". Minor League baseball is all about frills. It makes sense that they saw the Baby Cakes success and said man, we gotta do that. The problem I have is that it's basically the exact same logo. Same half mouth grimace. Same little hat on the head. The other problem is they gave it a beard and the Yankees are also known for having a no facial hair policy. Little odd.
Both teams are in Triple-A but they are in different leagues. So the only way we would get to see them play against each other is if its in the championship. Scranton won it last year so they could be back. Need the Baby Caked to improve. If it does happen it should be called The Baby Bowl. They should deliver a baby at home plate instead of throwing out a first pitch. All babies should get in for free and sit in their own section. There are a lot of good promotions to be done. If either team wants some more ideas just let me know. I'm pretty good at it. I used to tweet them out for a fake twitter account of the Hartford Yard Goats so I know a thing or two about the minor league social media game.
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