The Tampa Tarpons are back, as the Tampa Yankees (High A; Florida State League) rebrand with a classic Minor League Baseball moniker for the 2018 season.
The Tarpons played in the Florida State League from 1957 through 1987.
“We have great fans in Tampa,” said Vance Smith, Tarpons general manager, in a press statement. “This is Tampa’s team, and this name and brand identity honor the community and celebrate Tampa’s rich baseball history.”
Tampa has hosted spring training for more than 100 years, beginning in 1913. It has been the spring-training home of seven major league teams, including the Yankees. Tampa has also been a minor-league baseball town since 1919, when the Tampa Smokers were a charter franchise in the original Florida State League.
Assistant general manager Matt Gess says this is about more than making a splash. “The Tarpons name gives us the opportunity to connect with our fans and reconnect with Tampa’s baseball heritage,” Gess said.
The principal team colors of the new identity are Legends Navy, Tarpon Silver and Gulf Blue. The brand, developed by Studio Simon, features a primary logo that was inspired by previous iterations of Tampa Tarpon logos. The club is scheduled to unveil their new caps and uniforms in January.
The name change continues the evolution of the Yankees’ Florida operations. Last spring renovations to George M. Steinbrenner Field were unveiled to wide acclaim, earning the makeover the Best Renovation Award (MLB) from Ballpark Digest.