The Lowell Spinners on Wednesday became the ninth team in the minor leagues to change their logo for the 2017 season. Some teams have done it as part of a total overhaul. Others, such as the Memphis Redbirds and Lynchburg Hillcats, have kept their names but altered their art.
Every team, however, has employed one of the two minor leagues' two branding kingpins—Brandiose or Studio Simon—to come up with the final product. The Spinners broke that trend with their new art, which was done by Francis Santaquilani of FS Design in California.
"Our new logos better reflect exactly who we are," Spinners owner Dave Heller, who bought the team from Diamond Action Inc. in May, said in a statement. "The old logos did not even mention the word 'Lowell.' We are proud not merely to be from Lowell but of Lowell. The canals that run through this great city are a big part of our DNA, and we are proud to put the Lowell name back on our logo, jerseys and caps.
"We also wanted to incorporate our affiliation with the Red Sox as well as the factories and mills that define Lowell. Like the Spinners, they are an integral part of Lowell's past, present and very bright future."
Heller came to Santaquilani with the idea in July, and the process was finished in September. He said other ideas that didn't make the cut involved dogs and something based on the otters that swim in the river near the team's home of LeLacheur Park.
"I got a lot of direction and feedback from Dave. I worked closely on this with both him and his staff," Santaquilani said. "He mentioned the Canaligator, and I thought we could find a way to tie in the industry there with the gator. So we had the gator spinning and we tied that in with the industry."
FS Design has designed logos for the NBA's Orlando Magic and Cleveland Cavaliers, the WNBA and the Midwest League's Quad Cities River Bandits, the Sacramento River Cats and the Fresno Grizzlies, among many others. He also created the artwork for the 2011 Midwest League all-star game, held at Quad Cities' Modern Woodmen Ballpark.
The logo was unveiled on Wednesday as part of a fashion show in the Clark Auditorium at Lowell General Hospital, complete with an appearance by Heller (whose Main Street Baseball also owns the River Bandits) and the team's mascot, Canaligator. Afterward, Heller and Canaligator distributed foam baseballs with the team's new logo to patients in the pediatric ward of the hospital.