The Gwinnett Braves (Class AAA; International League) are preparing for a major change, as the club is undertaking a rebranding process.
Owned by the Atlanta Braves, the G-Braves have an identity that traces back decades. The franchise was known as the Richmond Braves beginning in 1966, and kept the name of its parent club upon relocating to Gwinnett County, GA prior to the 2009 season.
There were signs last year that the club was considering a change, and now it is following through with that plan. Fans can currently submit new name suggestions via the G-Braves’ website, a process that will run until June 2. After that concludes, the team will eventually roll out a name-the-team contest that includes a select list of choices for voting.
The G-Braves are hoping that the community will be engaged in the process, according to general manager North Johnson. More from The Gwinnett Daily Post:
“It’s a conversation we’ve been having for quite awhile,” Johnson said. “Now is a good time for Gwinnett to be engaged in the process, engaged in the naming of something to reflect Gwinnett, our history, our society and all the things Gwinnett has and Gwinnett is. It’s up to the entire Gwinnett Braves fan base and the community in our Name the Team contest.”
The organization has partnered with Brandiose, a renowned sports marketing company based in San Diego, to work through the renaming, rebranding and other tasks involved in the project. A new name is just the beginning for the club, which then faces an offseason of new logos, uniforms, ballpark signage and other updates, not to mention the legal work it requires.
Though it will operate under a new name, the minor league franchise will remain under Braves ownership. It still will function as the MLB club’s top minor-league team, trading players regularly with Atlanta.
The year 2017 has been marked by the launch of several new names around the minors, including the Jacksonville Jumbo Shrimp (Class AA; Southern League), New Orleans Baby Cakes (Class AAA; Pacific Coast League), Binghamton Rumble Ponies (Class AA; Eastern League), Florida Fire Frogs (High A; Florida State League), Down East Wood Ducks (High A; Carolina League), and Buies Creek Astros (High A; Carolina League). Time will tell whether the rebranding trend is as omnipresent in 2018, but the G-Braves’ decision means that fans can expect a new name in Gwinnett next season.
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