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New and Improved?

Written by: Peter Coolbaugh

The 2011 post season is now underway. This is the time of free agency, following prospects in the Fall League, handing out awards to the best in the game, and preparing for spring training.

First off, I am happy that both Matt Wieters and Nick Markakis got Gold Gloves. Jones and Hardy might have deserved them as well, but I will take what he did get. No Silver Sluggers this year but for a last place club, we did pretty darn good.

Now that we finally have a new GM in place (after having been spurned by several candidates), I hope this club gets its head out of its butt and make some moves. Not just in the FA and trade categories, but also in getting the best coaches, development, and scouting staff that they can. Player development is key in this league, a concept that the Angelos-era Orioles have yet to fully grasp.

No onto the major news of the day. The Orioles have changed their logo - again - for the umteenth time in the past 20+ years. Only this time it is more retro than before but it still means you have to go out and buy all new caps, jerseys, shirts, etc just to keep up with the fashion. Is this just another cash grab by the owners who know that nostalgia sells more? Since no one comes to the games, perhaps milking them for merchandise is the way to go?

Before I go off on a tangent on the monetary motivation for all this, let us look back at the history of the logo since 1988:

1988 - Last year of cartoon bird (also season with 107 losses)
1989 - ornithologically correct bird appears. Same logo that is on Cal's cap in Cooperstown.
1998 - Lifelike Bird appears on caps.
1999 - Refined lifelike bird roosts on caps
2005 - alternate O's cap appears (and is also not grammatically correct)
2009 - Bird further refined to be lifelike and also flying.
2012 - Updated cartoon bird to adorn caps.

That is just the cap changes, though some years they also had home and away hats. There were also script changes, color scheme changes, batting practice jersey changes, sleeve patch changes, etc that constantly required you to update your wardrobe constantly if being "current" was important to you.

I will admit that I am pleased to see the cartoon bird back. Though why the bird on the hat has its own hat with "o's" on it is beyond me. The logo does hearken back to the model franchise days and the updated uniforms are neat too, especially the orange jersey.

But I also like the last cap too. I really did. Changing logos or names does not automatically change the fortune of a franchise. Though in the case of Tampa Bay, it did. They dropped "Devil" from their name and became one of the best teams in the league. That is a rare exception of course.

So as of today, we still have the same owner and most of the same front office staff. No free agent signings yet. No trades. No future?

But at least we have a new/old logo to hang our hat on for while. And our logo is nowhere near being awful - see the new Miami Marlins for further news on this front.


1 comment:

  1. Hard to compete in the AL East against giant market teams when the Oriole fans give Camden Yards very few big turnouts. That's baseball for ya.