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Gwinnett Braves whiff on renaming team

A rose by any other name would smell just as sweet, Juliet told Romeo, but the Gwinnett Braves are hoping a new moniker will sound even sweeter.

The Triple-A baseball team, eager to distinguish itself from the big league club now toiling in Cobb County, announced a list of six new names under consideration Thursday.

The list was crafted from 900 different names submitted during a contest.

One name -- the "Sweet Teas" -- is so sugary it may have been submitted by a local fan named Mrs. Buttersworth.

If you think naming a team after the South's favorite beverage is stupid, you've yet to hear the other suggestions.

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Does anyone want to buy season tickets to see the "Buttons," "Big Mouths," "Gobblers," "Hush Puppies," or "Lambchops?"

I seriously doubt it.

Unfortunately for the Braves and anyone reading this I have time to whip up some potential promotional ideas.

Big Mouths: In-laws get in free.

Gobblers: Anyone who can't fit in one seat gets a free adjacent seat.

Hush Puppies: All catfish dinners receive a complimentary side.

Sweet Teas: Free diabetes screenings.

Lambchops: During the seventh-inning stretch fans will pelt volunteer ventriloquists with stuffed animals.

As you are now aware, I'm no marketing expert, but my theory is the G-Braves released so many awful alternatives the public will feel blessed when the team humanely selects "Buttons."

It's the same reason Georgia license plates are so hideous. The state makes them that way so you feel aesthetically compelled to cough up some extra cash for one featuring an eagle or anything else less emasculating than a peach.

If you are not from around here, or you slept a lot in history class, or both, you might wonder how "Buttons" even got into the renaming mix.

Button Gwinnett, a quick Google search reminds me, was one of three Georgia signers of the Declaration of Independence.

In some marketing meeting I am sure it made perfect sense to name a baseball team after a politician who died 60 years before the sport was invented, but to me it sounds like something "suggested" by a county commission that borrowed $33 million to build a baseball stadium. 

Buttons sounds cute, but it doesn't strike fear in the heart unless you have arthritis.

Buttons is the perfect name for a yappy Pekingese or a cuddly kitten, but for sports you've got to give 110 percent.

The Lehigh Valley Iron Pigs, the Wichita Wingnuts, the Modesto Nuts, the Topeka Train Robbers and the Albuquerque Isotopes know the score.

The best minor league baseball team names are even closer to Atlanta. The "Biscuits" rise in Montgomery, Ala., and, in Savannah, the "Bananas" play a very appealing brand of baseball.

My boss has suggested I never complain about something without providing a solution.

Here it is: The Atlanta Braves have proven a geographic designation in a team name means nothing, so just rename the Gwinnett Braves the Dacula Bats and offer free admission to anyone dressed like a vampire.

You're welcome, baseball fans.



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