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SBD/November 5, 2012/Franchises
Astros Unveil New Uniforms; Launch Rebranding Efforts Around Move To AL
Published November 5, 2012
CAPTAIN'S LOG: In Houston, Brian Smith wrote of Crane's first year as Astros Owner, "This is known ... and it says much about the Astros' immediate future: Crane's not an absentee owner." New uniforms, an updated logo and "the revival of an old mascot only hint at the massive change that’s occurred since Crane withstood an extended vetting process by Major League Baseball and agreed to move the Astros to the American League just so he could finally own a ballclub." The team's front office and on-field staff "have been overhauled," and portions of Minute Maid Park "soon will be repainted to match the new look." Crane has "enough of Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban and Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones in him to keep the struggling Astros in the news." Crane said, "We're not afraid to take some risks. People who know my history, if you give me some good information, we'll sit down and study it, we'll make good decisions and we'll take a calculated risk" (CHRON.com, 11/3).
SINGING A DIFFERENT TUNE: In N.Y., Stuart Elliott noted the song "Deep in the Heart of Texas" will be "providing inspiration for the Astros' advertising." The team is "repurposing the lyric 'The stars at night are big and bright' as 'The star is big and bright and back for good' and as 'Big and bright. Back for good.'" The modified lyrics reference "the star that appeared in the team's logo for decades." The two "big and bright" phrases will be used during the '13 campaign along with the "Root. Root. Root." promos the Astros used in '12. Some ads will "urge fans to 'Get Ready to Root. Root. Root.' and will include a familiar expression addressing the coming season: 'It's a Whole New Ballgame.'" Astros VP/Marketing & Strategy Kathleen Harrington Clark said that the team spent about $100,000 during the '12 season on advertising "in addition to commercial time and ad space obtained through deals with Fox Sports Houston and The Houston Chronicle." She added that the team's budget "would increase next season, 'but not to a large degree'" (N.Y. TIMES, 11/5).