Ostriches, Terrapins, and other Baffling News

Sport Change takes a break from Moniker Rankings (NHL coming soon!) to weigh in on two fresh pieces of news.

You can bet that there are some baseball fans in Pennsylvania who are fightin’ mad. Or at least confused.

1.)  As predicted by Chris Creamer, the former Reading Phillies (AA Eastern League affilate of Philadelphia) will now be known as the Reading Fightin’ Phils or Reading Fightins.  Alright.  I like the Fightin’ Phils moniker.  It’s a way to stay connected to the Phillies name, but has much more MiLB spirit than the straight copy of the parent club.  The Reading Phillies were the only Phillies affiliate to share the same name.  Followers of this site may know the Sport Change stance on this.  I think that generally speaking, farm clubs shouldn’t have the same nicknames as parent clubs unless all of the farm clubs of a team share the name–like the Braves and Cardinals nearly accomplish.  Got it?  Of course, things are not nearly that simple.  First of all, the idea of calling a team the ‘Fightins’ is laughable.  Can you really see fans following that lead?  My guess is that most of them will call them the ‘Phils.’  Now to discuss the perplexing conundrum that is the Fightin’s’ branding materials.  Their new primary logo is an ostrich.  This is an inside reference to the Phils’ mascot, some dude who rides an ostrich puppet around the field and hurls hotdogs into the stands.  Just let that sink in for a moment.


To make matters even more complicated, the Phils (I’m not calling them the Fightins) have an alter ego.  That identity is simply known as Baseballtown  and that logo features a fierce, baseball bat-wielding hotdog who is squirting yellow mustard into the shape of letters.  All in all, the Fightin’ Phils now have SEVEN different cap designs and one huge identity crisis.  This is ridiculous.  Calling a team the Fightins and having an ostrich logo is brazen enough.  The hotdog thing just puts this over the top.  Rather than opening this can of worms all at once, why didn’t Reading release each concept one by one.  Now, us MiLB fans have to digest this brave new brand all at once.  It’s like a meal of ostrich burgers with a side of hotdogs, and when you’re done…..all you feel like doing is fightin.’

Seven logos. Now that makes sense.


2. In other news, rumors are swirling that Maryland and/or Rutgers could be joining the Big Ten.  If they do, that’s it.  No more Big 10.  If the decision is made to sacrifice history and identity in favor of dollars, it is inexcusable.  If the masterminds behind college football are hellbent on treating the NCAA like a pro league, then why not cherry pick 30 of the top teams in the country, divide them into East and West, and have them duke it out like a minor league NFL.  You can’t have your cake and eat it too.  What’ll it be?  History or money?

Trying to preserve historic legacy and generate maximum profits is two-faced and untenable. If the Big Ten adds Maryland and Rutgers, they’ll be choosing the latter.

That’s all for today’s Sport Change news update.  Stay alert for more moniker rankings punctuated by the occasional newsflash.  Thanks for reading.  Leave comments.


1 comment
  1. Big Ten rumors verified. Sigh. Good bye, college football as we’ve known it. It’s now just a cash cow and a farm system for the NFL.

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