News
News Home
Quick Bites
Exploradio
News Archive
News Channel
Special Features
NPR
nowplaying
On AirNewsClassical
Loading...
  
School Closings
WKSU Support
Funding for WKSU is made possible in part through support from the following businesses and organizations.

Don Drumm Studios

The Holden Arboretum

Wayside Furniture


For more information on how your company or organization can support WKSU, download the WKSU Media Kit.

(WKSU Media Kit PDF icon )


Donate Your Vehicle to WKSU

Programs Schedule Make A Pledge Member BenefitsFAQ/HelpContact Us
Sports


Akron Aeros become the Rubber Ducks
A nod to the city's history and an aquatic fit with Canal Park stadium.
by WKSU's MARK URYCKI


Senior Reporter
Mark Urycki
 
(L to R) Akron Mayor Don Plusquellic, team owner Ken Babby, team GM Jim Pfander.
Courtesy of MARK URYCKI
Download (WKSU Only)
In The Region:

Akron’s Minor League baseball team is changing its name – again. New owner Ken Babby took over the double-A affiliate of the Cleveland Indians one year ago today. The new name is tied to Akron’s history with rubber and toys.

Click to listen

Other options:
Windows Media / MP3 Download (1:11)


The Minor League franchise suffered some embarrassment when it moved from Canton to downtown Akron in 1997 and then-owner Mike Agganis announced he would call the team the Blast, with a mascot named Kaboom.

It might have flown had he not talked about opening a small museum in the stadium dedicated to Akron astronaut Judy Resnik. She died in the explosion of the space Shuttle Challenger in 1986.

After reporters pointed that out, the team quickly renamed the team the Aeros.  

Canal rats, rubber ducks and cats
Now a new owner, Ken Babby, has come in, making new investments in Canal Park and he’s renaming the team the Akron Rubber Ducks. The team’s red cat mascot Orbit, will remain.

"We are not turning our backs on the Aeros brand. We love the great history of that brand over the last 17 years. You'll still see Orbit at games. That's a really important part of it. This is an evolution for our franchise.”   

The new name harkens back not only to the city’s tire industry but its toy history. The world’s first rubber ducks were made in Akron.  The name was actually suggested a few years ago by fans. 

“Some of the names we were looking at were Tire Jacks," says team General Manager Jim Pfander. "And we were looking at a rabbit mascot. Canal Rats was another name that had been thrown out there before in some previous contests.  We also looked at Vulcans.” 

The team logo includes tire treads and an angry rubber duck. The new team colors are (tire) black and yellow and blue and orange. New uniforms will be unveiled next month. 

Listener Comments:

I heard your broadcast of this story on my way to work. When I discussed it with my co-workers later, they were quite fascinated with the history of the previous names and the origin of the new one. I found it even more fascinating that when I went online to verify the report, your station was the only one that had done the research to make this story interesting. The other reports from CBS, Cleveland Online and FOX8 simply emphasized the dislike of the name by Akron residents and couldn't even verify when or how they came up with the name. Thank you NPR and WKSU for a thorough and informative report… as pleasantly expected.


Posted by: Justin Foster (Diamond) on October 30, 2013 3:10AM
the name just sucks


Posted by: Anonymous on October 29, 2013 11:10AM
Add Your Comment
Name:

Location:

E-mail: (not published, only used to contact you about your comment)


Comments:




 
Page Options

Print this page

E-Mail this page / Send mp3

Share on Facebook




Stories with Recent Comments

Ohio survey shows low-income people are choosing phones over food
Where is this study published? no sign of it on google scholar. is there a cite

The Akron Sound rocks the porches
fabulous group interview! you covered so much in so little time. wish i could be there for porch rockr.

Head of Ohio Dems says Kasich administration is lying about Suarez contacts
when Kasich's mouth is open , he's lying. Look what he did at Lehmans brothers and then lied about it all during the campaign. If a GOP didn't lie, he or she ...

Canton's Basilica of St. John absorbs news of the pope at morning Mass
Hello Chris,Marina,and Patrice, I just read this article and you all look great. I'm on facebook Jean Dutcher in blue and white stripped blouse. I"M so glad to ...

Exploradio: Avoiding the 'acting-white' trap
Growing-up black and being black should not determine that you will not speak well or will not be a high achiever in your goals in life.But society te nds to la...

Charter-school supporters to rally at Statehouse
I am on the bus now headed to the rally. Horizon is an excellent school. My son is is 7 th grade. The teachers and administrators are top notch and spend so m...

Former Nursing Home Land Added to Parks
In addition, LED technology also plays a very important role in advertising- LED placard is very, very useful for shop owners.

Ohio Supreme Court hears arguments on school funding
That's not true. Other school districts HAVE followed this law and done this. Oakhills is one of them and how they were able to provide technology for their s...

Death and beauty at Cleveland's Museum of Contemporary Art
What a disgusting story to air at lunch time.

Ohio Supreme Court grills attorneys on flooding and million-dollar fixes
Perhaps the State of Ohio should take the lead and implement state wide water shed districts that would collect minimum fees. The funds could then be distribute...

Copyright © 2014 WKSU Public Radio, All Rights Reserved.

 
In Partnership With:

NPR PRI Kent State University

listen in windows media format listen in realplayer format Car Talk Hosts: Tom & Ray Magliozzi Fresh Air Host: Terry Gross A Service of Kent State University 89.7 WKSU | NPR.Classical.Other smart stuff. NPR Senior Correspondent: Noah Adams Living on Earth Host: Steve Curwood 89.7 WKSU | NPR.Classical.Other smart stuff. A Service of Kent State University