The Reasoning Behind the Top-10

The Top-10 list of potential names for the new Can-Am League team in Ramapo (Rockland County, NY) is consistently horrible with the lists we always see in these contests.  If we were forced to chose, “Boulders” would be our selection, as it is the most unique, and there is some potential for fun and creativity in the branding and marketing department.  Below is the reasoning given for each name listed in the Top-10:

PRESS RELEASE – Rockland Baseball wishes there was an obvious name for your team.  The good news is after reviewing 3,075 entries from 11 different states we were able to narrow it down to 10 for your consideration.  The names might not be perfect, but come darn close similar to Armando Galarraga pitching with Jim Joyce umpiring first base. 

Previously we provided our fans with tips on naming the team.  Those tips can be seen in these names.  However, we also had to eliminate a number of compelling suggestions because of potential conflicts with existing sports team names.  We cannot express enough the importance of being original because if not we could run into legal snafus regarding trademarks.  For example, many entries called for Mountaineers and Rebels.  Unfortunately in both cases we would have run into resistance from the NCAA in the form of the West Virginia Mountaineers and both the UNLV and Ole Miss Rebels.  Another popular name was the Rockets, but in that instance we would have been taking on the Houston Rockets and the NBA for the rights to share that name.  Finally, history in the area dates back to the birth of our country.  Thus, there was a push for names that tied into the Revolutionary War period such as Patriots and Revolution.  In both cases they are taken one by the NFL and the other by MLS. 

An additional consideration revolved around the fact the team will be called the Rockland “insert name here”.  We want to become a regional team with fans flocking to the ballpark from not just Rockland, but North Bergen, Orange and Westchester Counties.  Yet the Hudson Valley Renegades have a lock on the name Hudson Valley.  We considered using Lower Hudson Valley “insert name here”, but that became too cumbersome.  There was strong consideration for naming the team the Ramapo “insert name here”, because of their commitment to build the ballpark.  When the dust settled and all the factors were factored, Rockland is the best choice. 

All and all, we are very appreciative and pleased with the options that we have been presented by our fans.  We look forward to the voting and in anticipation wanted to share our insights on the Top 10 Names. 

Boulders

The name ties perfectly into Rockland as a boulder is a rock.  In addition, boulders are indigenous to the area and scattered across the site where the ballpark will be built.  Rockland Boulders immediately signifies something strong and tough.  It received numerous entries during the first stage of the Name Your Team contest. 

FireFlys

This name brings a multitude of layers to it.  The first thing to jump off the page is that it is spelled wrong.  However, by changing the spelling of Fireflies to FireFlys it incorporates a baseball term being Flys as in fly balls.  In addition, they are indigenous to the area as they light up around the county all summer long.  The last and potentially most intriguing layer is that by including the term Fire in the team name the fans would be paying tribute to our neighbors at the Fire Training Center.  Initially it makes you pause, but it ends up making sense.  

Flash 

One of the owners of the Rockland Baseball club is John Flaherty whose nickname is Flash.  However, John did not push for this name, but many baseball fans in the area did suggest it in his honor.  As a result, it relates to Rockland and is original.  In addition, with only five letters it would fit nicely in many spaces such as across the front of the home jerseys.  It is safe to bet that if this name prevails, the logo would be related to lightning and not a charactuer of John.   

Ice

By far, this Top 10 name has caused the most raised eyebrows.  Truth be told, there was a surprisingly high number of entries that suggested Ice or Icemen.  The initial reaction is to say that Ice would make more sense for a hockey team.  However, when you consider the history of Rockland Lake it becomes clear.  For years a local company would cut the lake ice into big cubes and ship it via barge to Manhattan to supply the city.  As a result, you can see how it ties to Rockland plus it is the shortest of the 10 names on the list. 

Palisaders

This name ties perfectly into the fact that the Rockland Ballpark is being built on the Palisades, as well as, will be accessed primarily from the Palisades Interstate Parkway.  It gets high marks for being unique, as well as, indigenous to the area.   

Raccoons

This name received by far the most entries with respect to naming the team after an animal.  Granted raccoons might not be considered popular if they have just rummaged thru your garbage, but they resonated with baseball fans in the region. 

Red Glare

The words were written as part of a poem by Francis Scott Key in 1814 and were almost immediately set to music as “The Star Spangled Banner”.  A slew of suggestions pushed Rockets, but as mentioned previously the Houston Rockets would take issue if we became the Rockland Rockets.  However, the word play of Rockland Red Glare is almost the same as the song which states “rockets red glare”.  Considering the fact that  fireworks are such a popular form of entertainment after baseball games and the endless possibilities for a cool logo this could end up receiving a multitude of votes.

Retrievers

This name received a fair number of entries with respect to naming the team after an animal.  However, it made the list for the fact that when you think about America’s Pastime being focused on family and fun many folks consider dogs part of the family.  After all, they are man’s and woman’s best friend.  There is tremendous upside for a terrific logo if the team is ultimately named the Rockland Retrievers. 

RidgeRiders

The name RidgeRiders had its supporters, but there were numerous versions of this submitted such as RidgeRunners and RoughRiders.  We felt that there was support for this name because of the similarity in some of the names suggested.  In addition, drive by the future site of the Rockland Ballpark and take in the lovely view of the ridges in the distance.  The back drop of the Ramapo Mountains is going to be a spectacular setting to watch baseball.

Sliders

This name comes across as a somewhat generic baseball term referring to the pitch.  However, when you look at the team name in its entirety Rockland Sliders you actually begin to have the name Rocksliders emerge.  The Ramapo Mountains and the Palisades have both been prone to rockslides especially in the spring when the snow is melting so this name is appropriate.  

The reality is we could change our team name everyday for over 8 years since there were so many worthy entries.  However, at the end of the day, tradition calls for only one name.  Thus, we want to thank you in advance for voting and helping us Name Your Team.

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