Madison’s New Baseball Team Wants An “Edgy” Name


Cassie Volkin, Writer

As many in the Huntsville area now know, a new baseball team will be coming to Madison in 2020. The team, fresh with a new stadium and a new name, asked the community to submit ideas for the team’s name. Popular suggestions for the team name were the “Missiles” or the “Rockets,” but Brandiose, the professional branding group responsible for the name selection and marketing, wanted something less obvious, something “controversial” and “edgy” to get people talking. So, what happens when an experienced minor league baseball marketer tries to make Madison edgy? Behold.

Army Ants: Honestly, this one seems kind of bland. If they wanted to stay away from the obvious choices related to missiles and the like, I’m not quite sure how this scraped past. Definitely a 1/10 on the “edgy” scale, at any rate.

Comet Jockeys: What on Earth is a comet jockey? Hold on, I’m going to go look this up…okay, nothing came up online, but a jockey is typically a horse rider, so I guess a comet jockey is a comet rider? I guess that’s alright, but I had to think too much for it to really resonate with me.

GloWorms: Ah, the difference that a letter can make. I’m sure that they thought that removing a ‘W’ and combining the two words would get it a strong score on the aforementioned “edgy” scale, and it does, but here’s the thing. A glow worm, like the creatures in Alabama’s underground caverns that the marketing group meant to refer to, is a lovely and rare insect that would make for some awesome glow-in-the-dark themed merchandise and events. A Glo Worm, as spelled in the top ten, is a creepy children’s toy from the 80s. Look it up if you don’t believe me, and tell me if you want that as our mascot.

Lunartics: Again, I take issue with a single letter. “Lunatic” is already derived from the word “lunar”, so I feel like most people could put two and two together without the redundant add-on. Also, just a nitpick here, it makes me think of lunar ticks, which sound like a terrifying alien parasite, but hey, it’s sure to intimidate the opposition, unlike some of these next propositions.

Moon Possums: I actually don’t hate this one; it’s an indirect nod to our history with the space programs, and it strikes a pleasing image. However, are we really going to name the athletes representing us after meek scavenging animals who play dead and ooze bile at the slightest hint of danger? Just saying.

Puffy Head Bird Legs: This one is worthy of a spit take. It turns out “Puffy Head Bird Legs” is a name astronauts use for when blood rushes from your feet to your head as you blast into outer space, which sounds… unpleasant, but, isn’t that just a mouthful anyway? Say we end up being the Rocket City Puffy Head Bird Legs. How does that fit on a t-shirt? Do you abbreviate it to RCPHBL? Would that be pronounced “Rock Pebble”? The one perk of this name would be a convenient explanation to why meet-and-greet mascots always have disproportionately large heads, so I guess that’s something.

Space Chimps: A thoughtful homage to the legendary Miss Baker, the brave animal astronaut buried right next door at the Space and Rocket Center. She’s an Alabama icon, and a beloved, heroic squirrel monkey. Does that make us monkey racists? I think it does. Personally, I think that the Squirrel Monkeys would be a pretty cool name too, so come back to me when you’ve corrected that, and we’ll be good to go.

Space Sloths: Because, of course, nothing strikes fear into the hearts of an enemy team like slow-moving, cuddly animals floating in space. It is described as a classic minor league name, ranking among timeless hits such as IronPigs, Flying Squirrels, Chihuahuas, and Jumbo Shrimp, except I think any of those would be more intimidating, and yes, that includes the chihuahua.

ThunderSharks: I can sum up the justification for this in three words: it sounds cool. I struggle to see how it relates directly to our area, but the real issue that I take with it is that I fear that most of the advertisements would be clips from Sharknado.

Trash Pandas: Okay, someone’s seen Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2. Don’t try to lie to me; Brandiose specifically used the word “galaxy” in the description. I’m worried that a pop culture reference from a recent movie might not age well as a team name, but I suppose it works on some level. “Trash panda” is used as an alternate name for a raccoon. The raccoon to which it is referring is named “Rocket”. Hey, we have rockets! That works.

Voters also choose between three team identifiers: Madison, Rocket City, or North Alabama. Personally, I wish that Madison City had been an option, so then we could have been the Madison City Hammers, or MC Hammers for short, but the opportunity is gone now.

You may be asking yourself, does minor league baseball typically have such little dignity? The answer: yes! According to a WHNT interview with Ralph Nelson, a member of the Brandiose marketing group, “Team names are often disliked when they first are announced. It’s just the way it goes. And then the names start to really grow on people, and I think that’s what we are expecting here.” So, get used to calling yourself a trash panda, because apparently, we’ll learn to love it.

Voting ends at noon on August 16 for the top five, so click here to do your civil duty and pick your “edgy” new nickname. I promise you won’t be humiliated like in middle school. Not too much, anyway.