The Lowell Spinners, short-season single-A affiliate of the nearby Boston Red Sox, are named for their hometown’s industrial past. The team’s ballpark is situated among the town’s historic textile mills, which you will find represented in the team’s new suite of logos.
What you’ll notice first in the new logos, however, is a smirking alligator wielding a baseball bat and entangled in yarn spun from those aforementioned mills. The team’s longtime mascot, named Canaligator for Lowell’s extensive system of canals, takes center stage in the new identity. As with nearly every rebrand, the new gator-centric look has raised some eyebrows.
“The feedback has been interesting,” said Brian Radle, the team’s assistant general manager. “It’s funny how some people ask us about the alligator.”
He understands the questions, but Radle says the team is unapologetic about taking a fun approach to their new look.
“Alligators don’t necessarily exist in Massachusetts,” Radle admits. “But that’s something about us, if it gets people talking about us, then great. It’s a fun side of our product.”
The Spinners have been affiliated with Boston for two decades, so the team felt comfortable adopting a decidedly Red Sox-y identity. The typeface and colors draw specifically from their parent club, with the notable addition of a reptilian green.
“We’ve had a great relationship with them for the last 20 years,” Radle said. “We’re very proud of that affiliation with the Red Sox and being 35 minutes outside of Boston, we are in the thick of it with Red Sox Nation.”
The logos were designed by Francis Santaquilani of FS Design, notable because it’s the first new look in the minors this offseason not designed by industry behemoths Brandiose or Studio Simon. The team’s new owner Dave Heller had worked with Santaquilani in 2008 with the Quad Cities River Bandits, another team he owns, and wanted to continue that relationship.
“It wasn’t necessarily an anti-Brandiose thing,” Radle said. “It was just he was very impressed with the work that Francis had done with him in the past and trusted him with developing the new look here for us.”
Lowell’s logo is not the only green reptile in the New York-Penn League. With the new emphasis on Canaligator in their suite of logos, the Spinners wondered if they had created a rivalry with the Vermont Lake Monsters, whose logo features their mascot Champ.
“We were anxious to see if they came at us on social media,” Radle said, “and we were prepared to come back at them.”
So far there have been no inter-reptilian fireworks between the teams, but the New York-Penn League season is still almost five months away, so stay tuned.