Name the bird: Hamilton Cardinals of IBL seek mascot moniker


Published March 22, 2023 at 4:28 pm

There is a chance to take a home-run swing at naming the new mascot of the Hamilton Cardinals baseball team.

The city’s Intercounty Baseball League club has opened their Name The Bird contest. Fans can suggest a regal sobriquet for the redbird mascot at The entrants whose suggestions advance to the finals will receive a Cardinals prize pack, the team says.

The addition of the mascot is part of the Cardinals’ overall rebrand ahead of their 65th anniversary season in the IBL. The ballclub, under new managing partner Eric Spearin, has unveiled new uniforms and has announced strengthened player-development partnerships in the region. The new uniforms include a logo change and a black alternate jersey reading, “THE HAMMER” across the chest.

The contest might also represent a second chance for anyone who felt their creativity was not fully appreciated during the City of Hamilton’s recent snowplowing contest. Recently, three snow-removal vehicles were dubbed Max Kermanator, Plowy McPlowface, and CTRL-SALT-DELETE.

For anyone wondering, there is no formal affiliation between the Hamilton ballclub and their Major League Baseball namesake, the St. Louis Cardinals. There is a historical tie.

The Cardinals, who were one of the pioneering MLB organizations in the development of baseball’s tiered farm system, had a Class D-level team in Hamilton from 1939-42 and ’46-56. After it folded, the IBL Cardinals were organized and took the field in 1958.

A St. Louis farm team returned to the city in the form of the Hamilton Redbirds, who were part of the old short-season single-A New York-Penn League (NYPL) from 1988 to ’92. The Redbirds had a mascot called Bud E. Bird. (The New York-Penn League, which had teams in Southern Ontario from 1986 to ’99, was disbanded when MLB reorganized Minor League Baseball (MiLB) in 2021.)

The ’23 iteration of the Cardinals begins the regular season May 18 at Welland, with the home opener on May 19 against the Guelph Royals. That first game at Carstar Field at Bernie Arbour Stadium will be a rematch from last season’s playoffs, when Hamilton beat Guelph 3-2 in a best-of-five quarterfinal series.

(Cover image: Hamilton Cardinals.)

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