Amarillo Professional Baseball responds to criticism of name finalists

Amarillo residents took to social media on Wednesday to express their dislike for the proposed five finalist in Amarillo Professional Baseball's name the team contest. The finalists were chosen from over 3,000 entries.

“We were overwhelmed with the unique and incredible stories that were told by fans.

“This process has displayed the true passion that this community has for Amarillo, the Panhandle, and the state of Texas. We inched over every word in every submission and believe these top five names encompass all that we heard and read from this community," Tony Ensor, President and General Manager of Amarillo Professional Baseball, said.

The five finalists are:

Amarillo Boot Scooters - The Boot Scooters combines Amarillo's genuine welcoming attitude with its fun western heritage.

Amarillo Bronc Busters - Amarillo has deep cowboy roots and the Bronc Busters honors the community's resilient, independent spirit.

Amarillo Jerky - Commemorating its famous cattle drive, there's only one region that can lay claim to the "Beef Capital of the World."

Amarillo Long Haulers - Long Haulers celebrates Amarillo's famous Route 66, open roads, wind-bent trees, and the fun of Minor League Baseball.

Amarillo Sod Poodles - A pioneer's nickname for the "Prairie Dogs," this fun-loving local animal is very aggressive in protecting its family and home.

Despite the negative response from the Amarillo community, Ensor said the names are meant to be more kid-friendly and a little on the ridiculous side.

"There's some unique names in there. But that's what a lot of people chose to input those names and they met the criteria.

"A lot of people were probably looking for names like the Reds, the Cardinals, the Braves or the Dodgers -- more major league-style names. But in minor league baseball, the top names are the Chihuahuas, Flying Squirrels, Biscuits and the Iron Pigs.

"We understand how people feel. We expected a lot of that kickback so to speak, but we want them to understand that this is part of a process.

"You go through the process and I think if they give it a chance, they're really going to enjoy what we are going to do with the brand and the name and see how it culminates in the end," Ensor said.

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