Jacksonville Suns (Class AA; Southern League) owner Ken Babby has confirmed that the franchise will change its name to the Jacksonville Jumbo Shrimp. The new branding will be unveiled Wednesday morning.
The Suns moniker has a long tradition in Jacksonville, stretching back to an International League franchise that was established in the city in 1962. Aside from the 1985 through 1990 seasons, when the team was known as the Jacksonville Expos, the name Suns has been used by the Southern League franchise since its inception in 1970.
As he did in Akron, where he rebranded the Akron Aeros as the Akron RubberDucks (Class AA; Eastern League), Babby is teaming up with Brandiose. More from The Florida Times Union:
The Jumbo Shrimp logo will have a large “J” running through it, with the colors being St. John’s Navy and patriotic blue, accented with American red.
Babby, who has repeatedly emphasized “affordable, family fun” in promoting both his Jacksonville and Akron Double-A franchise in Ohio, believes Jumbo Shrimp meets his criteria of wanting a creative name that has a direct tie-in to the local community.
“There’s something fun and quirky about minor-league team names,” said Babby. “In our league alone, you have the [Pensacola] Wahoos and [Montgomery] Biscuits. When people see this logo and hear the name for the first time, they’ll see this experience is all about fun.”
There are several other clubs that are expected to announce new names this offseason, including the Binghamton Mets (Class AA; Eastern League), New Orleans Zephyrs (Class AAA; Pacific Coat League), and Staten Island Yankees (Short Season A; NY-Penn League).