Talk about an identity crisis, check this team out!
Ladies and gentlemen, allow me to introduce you to the
Los Angeles California Anaheim Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim! If you’re new to the game of baseball, there’s a chance you may recognize them as the team in the movie ‘Angels in the Outfield’, but they were the California Angels at that point.
Let me explain…
The Angels became a Major League Baseball team in 1961, and took their name as an homage to the Los Angeles Angels minor league team that dates back to 1892. They did in fact play in LA the first five seasons, but moved to their new stadium in Anaheim for the 1966 season, and then changed their names to the all-encompassing California Angels. This name stuck with the team through several decades of relatively uneventful seasons, until Disney took over the team in 1997, when, with the city of Anaheim, they spent a large chunk of change to renovate the stadium. It was decided that, because of the financial investment, the city of Anaheim should get a bit of credit, so the California Angels became the Anaheim Angels. Fitting, and location-accurate.
The team finally won their first World Series in 2002, so you would think this would be a good omen for this name, but under 3 years, the team fell under a new owner who, you guessed it, changed them to the Los Angeles Angels… of Anaheim. From a marketing standpoint, this is reasonable, as LA is an immense pool to tap for fans, but in reality… Anaheim isn’t in the city of Los Angeles. It’s not even in Los Angeles COUNTY. It’s about 40 minutes away from LA proper, if we’re being completely honest, so the best comparison I can make for any football fans would be the New York Giants and Jets having their stadium in New Jersey. Let’s just say, the fans were so upset about the name change that they started a lawsuit against the new team owner, although sadly nothing came of it.
So we’re back to where we started – the most nonsensical team name currently in the majors.
Speaking from my personal experience, Angels fans have always been a kind, welcoming bunch, and the stadium is lovely. They also have a more cute tradition from the turn of this century that involves the infamous Rally Monkey – a capuchin monkey featured on the jumbotron when the Angels are down in a game. His/her rise to fame came during their 2002 season that saw them through the world championship and has since become an Angels staple during postseason runs.
As Anaheim isn’t exactly the pinnacle of design and manufacturing, I plan on taking some creative license and dipping into the pool of Los Angeles talent for the outfit pairings to come. After all, they are the Los Angeles Angels… of Anaheim 😉