Triple-A Red Sox Unveil WooSox Nickname Amid Relocation Process
The Triple-A Int'l League Red Sox announced their new WooSox nickname and logo during a live broadcast on NESN filmed on location at Worcester's Mercantile Center, with "hundreds of people gathered in the lobby," according to Steven Foskett Jr. of the Worcester TELEGRAM & GAZETTE. The WooSox moniker "gained some traction in recent months" after the club and city formally announced the minor league club would relocate from Pawtucket for the '21 season. Triple-A Red Sox President Charles Steinberg said that it "didn't go unnoticed that WooSox became a front-runner almost by chance." He said that the club "insisted that the community have a say," and then ideas for the club's nickname "came pouring in," with more than 1,000 people submitting 218 names. The club's new logo features a "smiley face slugger dubbed Smiley Ball and what the team described as nods to the 1880 Worcesters of the National League." The "W" in WooSox has a "heart woven into it as an homage to the city's being known as the Heart of the Commonwealth." The club also announced the "opening of a pop-up WooSox Baseball Store in the Mercantile Center lobby," which is open from 10:00am-5:00pm ET Monday-Saturday this week (Worcester TELEGRAM & GAZETTE, 11/26).
WOOHOO: In Boston, Alex Speier writes the club "mulled a number of possibilities around which to build its identity" amid its relocation. In what Steinberg "described as a bracket-like competition, one name emerged as the clear and consistent favorite among fans." Steinberg: "The fans were the ones who kept making WooSox defeat all oncomers. It was an unusual display of verbal pugilism." Speier notes club officials spent "months trying to see if another moniker might take hold," but "those debates gave way to a landslide." Triple-A Red Sox Exec VP/real Estate Development & Business Affairs Dan Rea said, "Nothing ever really displaced WooSox" (BOSTON HERALD, 11/26).
BOOHOO: In Massachusetts, Matt Vautour writes naming the franchise the "same thing" as its affiliated MLB club "makes the team feel like Boston's junior varsity." The nickname choice is a "rare misstep by this ownership group, which has done a nice job immersing itself in Worcester and including little details in both the park and the franchise that make it feel rooted here." The logo "already seems to be on borrowed time." Vautour: "WooSox will also further worsen Worcester's forever-long history of people mispronouncing it" (MASSLIVE.com, 11/26).