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Baseball By Design tells the story of America one minor league baseball logo and nickname at a time. Paul Caputo covers minor league baseball at all levels for the website SportsLogos.net. On this podcast, he talks with front office personnel and designers about the origins of some of the game‘s best and wackiest logos and nicknames. Twitter: @Count2Baseball Instagram: @baseballbydesign
 
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show series
 
The High-A Hillsboro Hops are named for an important crop in Oregon, but more than that, they're a celebration of the magical association of beer and baseball. The team's president, general manager, and 2021 MiLB executive of the year K.L. Wombacher talks about the origins of the nickname, designer Dan Simon talks about the creation of the logo—and…
 
The Midland RockHounds are named for the geologists who work in Texas's oil industry but since 1999 their logo has been a literal hound. The team's Assistant GM Jeff VonHolle talks about the origins of the nickname, Torch Creative's Brad Bishop and Mike Thurman talk about a 2021 rebrand, and in a Baseball By Design exclusive (!) McGruff the Crime D…
 
Paul Lukas has been covering sports branding for nearly a quarter century through his popular online platform, UniWatch. Paul joins the show to talk about trends in the field, and how they influence (or are influenced by) minor league baseball. And for dessert, the godfather of helmet sundae collecting, Eric Lichtenberg, talks about that hobby, and…
 
The Saint Paul Saints made a name for themselves as an independent franchise with wacky promotions, pig-themed branding, and a heavy-hitting ownership group that includes Bill Murray and Mike Veeck. Now as a Triple-A affiliate of the Minnesota Twins, the team is carrying on its tradition of fun with wacky branding but a classic brand. The team's ex…
 
The Bowie Baysox, Double-A affiliate of the Baltimore Orioles, pay tribute to the nearby Chesapeake Bay with their time-honored brand. GM Brian Shallcross talks about the history of the brand, Curved Brim Media Month rounds out with Patrick Noote of the invaluable resource Baseball Mapper dot com, and Baseball By Design's newest contributor, Wildli…
 
The Gwinnett Stripers pulled a bait and switch when they announced a name that was not one of the five finalists in their name-the-team contest. Find out how that went down from the team's GM at the time, North Johnson, and Brandiose's Jason Klein. And on week four of Curved Brim Media month on Baseball By Design, Pat Larson of the MiLB Hat History…
 
The Corpus Christi Hooks are named for the fishing industry in the Gulf of Mexico and for the curve ball of one of Texas's most famous native sons (OR ARE THEY?!). This week, CEO of Ryan Sanders Sports & Entertainment (and son of Nolan Ryan) Reid Ryan and designer Dan Simon talk about the napkin sketch that led to the Hooks' logo. And on week three…
 
The Durham Bulls went from being the very image of the gritty, no-frills minor league experience, as seen in the classic movie Bull Durham, to being one of the iconic brands with one of the most recognized logos in the minors—thanks in no small part to that movie. The team's production designer Paxton Rembis discusses the team's history and the wor…
 
The Akron RubberDucks are named for the long history of the tire industry in Akron, not to mention the city's longstanding association with the team's eponymous bath toy. Akron GM Jim Pfander and Brandiose's Jason Klein stop by to talk about the team. Plus, it's Curved Brim Media month in August—each week Baseball By Design will highlight a content…
 
The Charleston Dirty Birds pay homage to the tiniest heroes of local industry with their brand—the literal canaries in the coal mine. The Godfather of Minor League Baseball Branding, Chuck Domino, stops by to talk about his philosophy of naming teams; designer Carolina Buchas talks about the development of the logo; and Jordan Bennett, curator of t…
 
The Single-A Kannapolis Cannon Ballers have one of the most popular brands in the minors, but they had a unique challenge in replacing a brand based on beloved native son Dale Earnhardt. Alicia Amling of Temerity Baseball, designer Dan Simon of Studio Simon, and six-time Guinness Record holder and human cannon baller himself David "The Bullet" Smit…
 
The High-A Bowling Green Hot Rods are more than just a cool minor league team with a great logo—they're an integral part of their community. On this episode of Baseball By Design, the team's award-winning general manager Eric Leach stops by to talk about not just the team's brand, but the role they play in being good neighbors; home-grown designer …
 
In Baseball By Design's first ever Tampa Bay Rays-style opener, Sofie Dill joins to tell the story of how she order a pizza for Mariners player Jesse Winker. Then, we're joined by Tyler Maun and Josh Jackson, who cover Minor League Baseball in lots of ways, including writing for MiLB's website and on the Show Before the Show podcast. Most important…
 
For two decades, the Pioneer League team in Missoula, Montana, was called the Osprey before they rebranded as the PaddleHeads—a nickname that describes both moose and people who love being on the river. The team survived a season cancelled by COVID and losing their Major League affiliation when the minors were reorganized in 2020, and now have a po…
 
The Burlington Sock Puppets are the only team in the new-look Appalachian League whose logo was not created by Major League Baseball. In the first-ever group interview on Baseball By Design, designer Dan Simon of Studio Simon is joined by Sock Puppets Owner/Team President Ryan Keur, General Manager Anderson Rathbun, and Assistant General Manager Th…
 
Designer extraordinaire Todd Radom is back on Baseball By Design, this time to discuss his work on the Wichita Wind Surge's Pegasus-based brand and what the nickname Wind Surge means to the up-and-coming city of Wichita, Kansas—not to mention the alternate Turbo Tubs brand that he created. The team's director of fan experience Bob Moullette also jo…
 
The Triple-A Worcester Red Sox—or WooSox to friends—have a brand built around the iconic yellow smiley face created by commercial artist and Worcester native Harvey Ball. This episode features the team's director of productions Tim Quitadamo, Brandiose designer Jason Klein, baseball media member and Red Sox fan Gabrielle Starr, and Harvey Ball's so…
 
It's opening day for the collegiate summer level West Coast League, owner of a brand new logo that highlights the beauty of the Pacific Northwest, where the league operates. The 16-team league features such wacky teams as the Portland Pickles, Walla Walla Sweets, and Nanaimo Night Owls/Bars (who play by different names according to the time of day)…
 
The collegiate summer level Danville Otterbots made a splash with their aquatic robot mammal logo. Otterbots general manager Austin Scher stops by to discuss the many layers of significance to the team's brand—along with his own extensive knowledge of minor league baseball branding. Plus, Otterbots Ambassadors Tim Stoops of Montana and Johnny Bowli…
 
The Rocket City Trash Pandas made a splash with their new brand right before the 2020 season, then had to keep the momentum going in spite of a year lost to COVID. The team still set merchandise sales records with their patriotic astronaut raccoon logo and are now one of the best known in the minors. Trash Pandas Vice President Lindsey Knupp and Br…
 
The Idaho Falls Chukars base their identity on a bird that can best be described as a small, husky turkey. This week, Chukars Assistant GM Chris Hall, Pioneer League Vice President Henry Hunter, and Arkansas State Parks Director Shea Lewis (formerly of Idaho State Parks) stop by Baseball By Design to talk about what makes this bird the perfect foun…
 
The collegiate summer level Carolina Disco Turkeys have only played one full season, but they've taken the world of baseball branding by storm. Team president Greg Sullivan, artist Brittain Peck, and Matt Strangewayes of the Phoenix Zoo talk about what makes disco turkeys—or peacocks—an appropriate mascot for a team in Winston-Salem, North Carolina…
 
The iconic prison in Joliet, Illinois, opened in 1858 and has been highlighted in countless pieces of pop culture, from The Blues Brothers to Prison Break to songs by Bob Dylan and Memphis Minnie—and since 2011, the nickname of the Joliet Slammers baseball team, which plays in the independent Frontier League. In this episode of Baseball By Design, …
 
The Hartford Yard Goats are one of the most popular brands in Minor League Baseball. They're named for locomotive switchers in rail yards—appropriate to Hartford because the rail industry features prominently in the city's history. But the team's identity extends well beyond trains. General Manager Tim Restall, Brandiose designer Jason Klein, and s…
 
The erstwhile Bakersfield Blaze were not the most glamorous of franchises, but before they were contracted by Minor League Baseball, their backwards-facing ballpark was home to stories that feel like they're right out of a Hollywood movie—games that had to be paused as the sun set over the center field wall, the time they intentionally set the fiel…
 
It's opening day for Triple-A baseball and other affiliated and independent leagues are getting underway soon! We can start taking those baseball road trips we've been planning all offseason! Guests this week include Benjamin Hill of MiLB.com, who has been to 182 minor league ballparks; Jeremy Soule, who in 2014 co-founded the annual Baseballpalooz…
 
The Savannah Bananas have become a phenomenon in the world of baseball branding. Their popular logo represents more than just a baseball team, but rather an entirely new version of the sport. As the Banana Ball World Tour takes the country by storm, this episode visits with team owner Jesse Cole, designer Dan Simon of Studio Simon, and the Young Pr…
 
The Beloit Snappers are no more, but their legend lives on, as told by Chris Kretz, the designer who created the logo in 1995, and Bobby Coon, the team's media director for five years in the 2010s. Find out how Pete Rose, Shoeless Joe, and Ken Griffey Jr. factor into the turtle-based logo. Plus, stay tuned for a surprise post-credit sequence with H…
 
The Negro Leagues Baseball Museum in Kansas City, Missouri, tells the incredibly important story of the baseball teams and players who endured unspeakable hardships to succeed, against all odds, in the face of a segregated America. Similarly, the museum itself has overcome obstacles—most notably a global pandemic that shut their doors for the bette…
 
The collegiate summer level Dub Sea Fish Sticks were the darlings of the offseason with their hotly contested online vote to determine a new name. The team's general manager comes on the show to break down the Fish Sticks/Seal Slingers electoral map, to track live polls on whether fish sticks are junk food, and react in real time to rival minor lea…
 
The Double-A Richmond Flying Squirrels were one of the original wacky minor league brands, but now in their 13th season, they're one of the game's classic brands. On this episode, Flying Squirrels CEO "Parney" Parnell talks about the origin of the nickname and logo, Creative Services & Production Director Nick Elder talks about his work creating th…
 
In many ways, the Triple-A El Paso Chihuahuas are the poster team for the era of wacky logos in minor league baseball. Lifelong El Paso resident and Chihuahuas Senior Director of Marketing & Communications Angela Olivas joins the podcast to talk about what the team's identity means to the community, and Brandiose's Jason Klein stops by again to sha…
 
The reason for the Tri-City Dust Devils' identity becomes apparent when you learn that they have had just one single rainout in more than two decades of playing baseball in Pasco, Washington. But their brand is about so much more than their logo—it's about their place in the community. This week, Erik "The Peanut Guy" Mertens, who has been the face…
 
The Lehigh Valley IronPigs are, by design, a Triple-A team with a Single-A approach, which has led to one of the most fun brands in the minors—and lots of bacon! The team's general manager Kurt Landes stops by to talk about the logo, as well as the team's Salute to Philly alternate brands, and we settle once and for all which team started the food-…
 
Reno Aces general manager Emily Jaenson talks about the unique challenges of branding the Triple-A team that plays in the Biggest Little City in the World. The Reno Aces, who have been an affiliate of the Arizona Diamondbacks since their inception have a fun but grownup identity that has undergone subtle shifts over the years—with more coming soon!…
 
Dan Simon is one of the most prolific and influential graphic designers in sports, and especially in minor league baseball at all levels. In two and a half decades, he has created hundreds of brands, including Super Bowl logos, identities for major league teams in multiple sports, and nearly 100 minor league baseball team logos. On this episode, we…
 
The collegiate summer-level Portland Pickles take minor league fun to the next level with a wacky logo and nickname and a hilarious social media presence. I talk with the team's very funny co-owner Alan Miller about how serious the team is about having fun. Also, I speak with Ed Rivera of the Dad Hat Chronicles podcast to get his take on Pickles ca…
 
The Daytona Tortugas, Low-A affiliate of the Cincinnati Reds, were forced into rebranding when they changed parent clubs before the 2015 season, and the result is one of the most popular brands in the minors. Paul speaks with the team's general manager Jim Jaworski and the logo's designer Dan Simon about the identity and the role the team plays in …
 
The Double-A Portland Sea Dogs logo was created in 1994 by Guy Gilchrist, whose career includes creating characters for the Muppets, Fraggle Rock, The Pink Panther, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Looney Tunes, Tom & Jerry, and more. Paul talks with Guy and the team's award-winning broadcaster Emma Tiedemann about the brand, plus a surprise post-cred…
 
The iconic TV show M*A*S*H introduced millions of viewers to minor league baseball's Toledo Mud Hens through the quirky character Corporal Max Klinger, played by Toledo native and lifelong Mud Hens fan Jamie Farr. Mr. Farr, now 87 years old, joined me to talk about the team he grew up watching, the impact his fandom had on the TV show, and his curr…
 
The real-life Albuquerque Isotopes, currently Triple-A affiliate of the Colorado Rockies, debuted in 2003, shortly after an episode of The Simpsons portrayed Homer thwarting plans that the Duff Beer Company had to move the fictional Springfield Isotopes to New Mexico. Paul is joined by longtime Isotopes General Manager John Straub, we hear Paul's 2…
 
Todd Radom has created logos for Super Bowl XXXVIII, the 2009 NBA All-Star Game, the 2014, 2016, and 2018 MLB All-Star Games, and Major League and minor league baseball teams, including the Brooklyn Cyclones and Wichita Wind Surge. On this episode, Todd and Paul discuss Todd's ride on the rickety old Cyclone roller coaster on Coney Island, the 1979…
 
Chris Creamer founded the website SportsLogos.net 25 years ago, and since then it's become an invaluable resource for fans of sports logos, uniforms, and branding news. Baseball By Design host Paul Caputo has been covering minor league baseball logos for Chris's site since 2014, and so it's only fitting that Chris is the guest on the debut episode …
 
Brandon is joined by Frederick Keys GM Dave Ziedelis. Dave and Brandon don't hold back in discussing the negotiations between MLB and MiLB that has Frederick on the list of teams that could potentially get eliminated prior to the 2021 season. The Keys have been entrenched in the Frederick community for decades, have been tops in Carolina League in …
 
Brandon is joined by the general manager of the Norwich Sea Unicorns (Short Season 'A' Tigers affiliate), Dave Schermerhorn! Dave dives into the process that led to the Connecticut Tigers deciding to rebrand as the Sea Unicorns, how the name and logo tie into the city of Norwich and how the organization is dealing with the potential of being on the…
 
In the second season premiere of Apter Hours, Brandon is joined by former colleague and current host of The Daily Line on NBC Sports Radio, Tim Murray. Brandon and Tim talk about the importance of preparation for a broadcast, the asinine proposal that would remove 42 teams from the minor league landscape, the Houston Astros sign-stealing scandal an…
 
It's a Throwback Thursday #TBT episode of Apter Hours. We go back to 2017, when Brandon made the decision to take a position out of minor league baseball after nine seasons. The episode details every step of his Minor League Journey, including the very difficult decisions, professional growth, stepping outside your comfort zone and being a part of …
 
Amarillo Sod Poodles President & General Manager, Tony Ensor, joins the show to discuss Amarillo's successful season on and off the field. The Soddies sold out 23 straight games, tallied 40 total sellouts and also won the Texas League title in their first year of existence. Tony and Brandon also discuss the challenges faced, fans showing up for min…
 
On October 18th, 2019, Baseball America broke a story detailing a proposal from Major League Baseball that could eliminate 42 Minor League Teams ahead of the 2021 season. In this episode, Brandon is joined by Minor League Baseball's Senior Director of Communications, Jeff Lantz. Topics include the advantages & disadvantages for both sides, geograph…
 
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