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Saturday, July 21, 2007

Rename the Portland Beavers?

As one of the 17 people watching the Portland minor league baseball team on television tonight, I was treated to a discussion of the question whether the team should change its name. It seems there's too much potential confusion between the Portland Beavers and the Oregon State Beavers (two-time college national champs), and the new owners of the pro team are thinking about changing its name.

But what would they change it to? Sometimes the minor league teams take the name of the major league team with which they are affiliated. These days, Portland is linked to the San Diego Padres. Back when they were affiliated with the Colorado Rockies, they were called the Portland Rockies.

Some teams go with a slight variation of the major league team name. For example, tonight Portland's playing the AAA team in the Arizona Diamondback organization -- they're called the Tucson Sidewinders. And so rather than call themselves the Portland Padres, perhaps they could go with a synonym for "Padres." The Portland Pedophile Priests?

Anyway, to make your views known on the change-vs.-no-change issue, you can go here.

Comments (30)

The portland Beavers have a rich history going back a long ways when they used to play against Joe DiMaggio when he played for the Sna Francisco Seals of the Pacific Coast League. Back then there were no major league teams out west.

Having said that, this town has changed due to the massive influx of people from elsewhere (including the author of this blog, though he did migrate many years before the current influx). So I can see a possibility of confusion. But decent marketing could change that without changing the name.

But then again, the PCL has some great teams with long histories that also changed their nicknames. My two favorites are the the Las Vegas Area 51s and the Albequerque Isotopes. Those two alone could inspire some really cool new nicknames for a Portland team. (the Webbed Toes, the Mossy Backs, the Raindrops, etc.)

How about the IPAs?

I totally agree that Portland Beavers should change their name. i have always found it stupid and confusing. Being that I grew up in Corvallis, there the is only 1 Beavers as far as i'm concerned. aren't there other animals they can choose? or trees?

how about the Portland Pinecones? :)

I have always thought the Portland Pachyderms would be cool. However I agree with hilsy, creative marketing is key.

Portland Blue Herons?

Nah. The slower teenagers might think you were talking about smack.

Of course, the Portland Linchpins would make perfect sense, but that one's been over-used...

I just read the story about the owner of the Portland Beavers wanting to change the name of the team. Crazy. I think the Beavers are aptly named and any sports fan would know the difference between the minor league Beavers and the OSU Beavers and the average layperson would not care either way.

Let us hope clear heads will prevail and the Portland Beavers will be with us for many years to come.

I will say this, the thought of a team called the Portland Salmons makes me shudder!

New nickname? How about the Portland Traffic?

Portland Creatives?

Portland Panhandlers?

Portland Trams?

Portland Lefty's

Let's just call them "Randy".

I cast my vote. No way should the name change. It's a dumb idea. I know they want to sell more merchandise. Promote the team and folks will buy merchandise. A decade ago Jack Cain promoted the heck out of his little Single-A franchise and folks bought hats by the bushel. The same thing would have happened with the Beavers if they wouldn't have been so badly mismanaged by Marshall Glickman and his crew. Give me a product I want to spend money on, and I will. Period.

Leave it the Portland Beavers! No one with a brain would confuse the Portland Beavers with the Oregon State Beavers.
What a joke!

I feel the name SHOULD be changed. It should reflect the city and metro area. How about the R.A.I.N (remote and incredibly Narcististic)

Name them the Ducks. No one would confuse that name with any college baseball team.


Bums? Liberals? Blue States? :)

As a transplanted Portlander in Kansas, it's sad to read in the hometown news that a name change is being contemplated for a team that in the late 'forties we proudly called the "Portland Lucky Beavers."

I watched that game on FSN, too (nothing else on), and got a pretty good chuckle out of this new trust-fund owner imagining that a different name would gin up enough interest in his team that more than a couple of thousand people will turn out for AAA ball.

I'm a lifelong MLB fan who travels to Seattle, Denver, and Minneapolis for baseball, but it's been years since I've gone out to Civic/PGE to see a game. As Brian Meehan's piece in Saturday's Oregonian sports section pointed out, the players themselves can barely stand being here. Getting sent to Portland is the worst that can happen, and their lives are dedicated to getting out.

This city lacks the heart, confidence, and leadership to do anything better than minor league ball. The excuses are too daunting. Sam Adams, who's practically already anointed as the next mayor (check out the number of times the word "vision" is used by the Oregonian's Dylan Rivera in his glowing coverage of Sam's City Club speech), essentially asserts that Portland's future lies in being inaccessible to any mode of transportation other than bicycle, foot, or transit.

Fair enough; folks like me who live in the country, and have no mass transit options, have plenty of suburban malls to drive to, and unlike Seattle and Denver, there's no athletic magnet in the downtown area. Renaming a minor league ball team won't change that.

There were at least 19 people as my girlfriend and I were watching from here in Anchorage, AK. Whoever that centerfielder was has skills.

I was at the ballpark last night. Yordany Ramirez is the centerfielder. Youngest guy on the team. I also saw him play at Lake Elsinore last year; since he's on his way up, he's likely very happy to be in Portland.

I'm not a fan of the names Isotopes and 51s; too trendy and silly. That said, I'm fine with a name change.

The Portland Steelhead.

Rename the Beavers? Never! My god, that would be tantamount to tearing down Henry Thiele's, taking the 7-Up bottle off the building at 37th & Sandy, changing the name of Meir and Frank, converting Burnside into a one-way street and renaming Civic Stadium.

Oh yeah...

I'd be happy with the Portland Microbrewers... or how about the PBR Tallboys? I can see some endorsement money in that one...

The Bevos should remain the Bevos. If they're going to change the name, though, how 'bout Portland Protesters? Portland Little Beruiters? Portland Planners?

The Padres, I believe, are the only MLB club to keep the city's minor league team name. The chance of a Portand MLB team remaining Beavers is even slimmer than a MLB team in Portland.

Wanna sell merchadise? Bring back the Beavers logo and style of the 1950s. The only Bevos clothing I own (other than a early 90s cap that no longer fits) was purchased from from Stahl & Dean, not at the Park.

Snethen is right. Under Jack Cain did a pretty good job promoting the Rockies and selling merchandise. They put a red rose with the mountain logo. Nice little touch. I still don't undertand why Cain didn't name the Bend Rockies and Portland Rockies the 'Cascades,' though. From what I can tell, Merritt Paulson intends to be a stable, deep-pocketed, hands-on owner, something the Beavers and Timbers haven't had since they came back back to Portland in 2001.

I've enjoyed baseball at the Park (I can't call it the Utility-That-Shall-Not-Be-Named Park) since I was a kid. Beavers. Mavericks. Rockies. I celebrated my 10th, 21st, 25th, and 40th birthdays there. Some of my favorite memories of my grandfather are of him, my cousins and I along the third baseline in the former Civic Stadium (he still called it Multnomah Stadium). But I see more games a season in Seattle since the Insurance-Company-That-Shall-Not-Be-Named Field was built. This is because even though baseball (including the Salem Senators, a single A team in the 70s) and Blazers were my first love (I was 10 during the height if Blazermaina), my passion is football. And not the pointyball kind. I can't be in the Park now without wanting to stand and chant in Section 107. Paulson better not even think about messing with 'Timbers.'

If we go by who used the name first, OSU should change their nickname!

From Wikipedia:

The original Portland Beavers began play in the PCL in 1903, being known variously as the Browns, Giants, Ducks, and Webfooters before deciding on the name Beavers in 1906. In the 1940s and 1950s, they were occasionally known as the "Lucky Beavers."

From the OSU website:

In the early days of the university, Oregon State's athletic teams were known as the Aggies. When orange uniforms replaced drab sweatshirt-gray and tan jerseys, the teams were referred to as the Orangemen.

In 1916, when the school yearbook was renamed "The Beaver," the name Beaver became associated with the school. It is believed the press also had some influence in changing the name, particularly L.H. Gregory of the Oregonian newspaper.

How about:

The Portland Overcast?
The Portland Ecoterrorists?
The Portland Meth?
The Portland Streetkids?

Gotta say, given the recent spate of lawsuits, naming a team the Padres might drive the tykes away.

Keep the Beavers the Beavers!
The name isn't the problem.

I'd like to see better marketing -- from game reminders to merchandising...........but keep the name --we've had it since 1906!

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