Thursday, February 23, 2012

Can we lose the Anaheim already?

Pet peeves usually are a selfish little indulgence we all carry to prove in some small way that we are smarter than other people. Let's face it, we are all just tiny little specks in a grand universe and we need all the help we can get to find some personal relevance. As such, pet peeves are okay. We all have to cope, right? The cool thing is pet peeves come in all shapes and sizes and you can have any interest in the world and still find a pet peeve in there somewhere. You may hate bad grammar or "texting-speak." You may hate dog owners that let their dogs poop anywhere. You may hate anything you like and that's just fine. For this little space in the universe, the pet peeve du jour is the team name of the Angels.

Hey! Pet peeves can be stupid. It's a personal right guaranteed by the Constitution. There is nothing against the Angels as a team. Oh, it got kind of boring that they won the American League West too many years in a row. And perhaps there is some chafing at the "Mike Scioscia is a genius" talk. But otherwise, there is no personal animosity to the team at all. They have a fine owner that has been good for the game of baseball and they are giving the Dodgers a run for their money as the prized franchise in southern California (apologies Padres fans). But their team name is this man's pet peeve.

It's not just that the team name is redundant. Los Angeles means, "The Angels." So basically, the team is The Angels Angels. That's kind of dumb. But anyway, the word(s) in front of the team name has changed a few times. They were the California Angels. They were the Anaheim Angels. Now, they are the Angels Angels. But then they went ahead and tacked on the "of Anaheim" bit at the end. Why did that happen? From Russ Blatt of 85% Sports:
Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim – Los Angeles in Spanish means, “The Angels”. Done. However, the team name story deserves more than seven words. The team was formed in 1961 as the Los Angeles Angels. In 1965, the team changed its name midseason to the California Angels in order to promote that the Angels were the only American League team in California. In 1997, Disney purchased the team with the condition that the name Anaheim be introduced into the team name and thus became the Anaheim Angels. In 2005, new owner Arte Moreno wanted to reintroduce the name Los Angeles into the team name; however the stadium lease insisted that Anaheim remain as part of the team name. That is how the name, Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim was invented. As a history note, there was a minor league team named the Los Angeles Angels that played in the Pacific Coast League from 1903 to 1957. There was a team with the same name that played in the California League in 1892, 1893, 1901 and 1902. Okay, they got more than seven words.
And so it is a legal issue. Great. Just great. Can you give it a rest, Anaheim? Does your little suburb need that much publicity to justify your tax rates? Come on now.  How about if you have a town meeting and let the Angels be rid of that hated moniker. Two links in one day, Russ? Royalties?

Why is this a pet peeve? Do you really need an answer? Pet peeves are a personal choice guaranteed by the constitution, remember? Well, okay. The answer is because it is awkward. Team names should roll off the tongue like the Philadelphia Phillies does. Try saying the Angels full name in a sentence. Isn't it awkward? Plus, it's the longest team name in baseball and perhaps in all sports. When you type for an avocation, typing such a long name is a pain in the butt. But as you've probably noticed, you'll never see the full team name in this space. That's a personal rebellion and tough nuggies if you don't like it. Instead, the pet peeve is really kind of self-destructive because an even longer name is used. What is it? For this site, the team's name is, "the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim in southern California in the southwestern United States of America in the northern hemisphere of planet Earth." Nobody ever said pet peeves were rational.

Just think if every team had to do this? Here is what we would end up with:
  • The Texas Rangers of Arlington
  • The New York Yankees of the Bronx - You can't just say, "Bronx." You have to put the, "The," in there.
  • The New York Mets of Flushing on the site of a former World's Fair - Flushing is kind of a bad name for a team in the toilet, no?
  • The Florida Marlins of Miami. Wait. They already fixed this one.
  • The Tampa Bay Rays of St. Petersburg
  • The Minnesota Twins of two Siamese cities.
  • The Colorado Rockies of Denver.
  • The Arizona Diamondbacks of Phoenix.

Think of how awful that would be. Following MLB would be like following Triple A baseball and the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Yankees. It is a new day for the Angels. They have Albert Pujols (whom they have already ticked off with the "El Hombre" billboards) and C.J. Wilson. Now is the perfect time to start a new journey with a team name that makes sense. Make it happen, Anaheim. This personal rebellion costs this writer a lot of extra characters.


Left Field said...

Extending this into football:

*The New York Giants (or Jets) of New Jersey Which is Actually in the New York Suburbs, Thus Kind of Justifying the Name.

*The New England Patriots of Foxborough but Almost Hartford, by Way of Boston.

*The Dallas Cowboys of Arlington Formerly Irving.

William Tasker - Caribou, ME said...

Ack! Football!? Next you'll be feeding hockey team names. :) But, yes, you have the idea.

Anonymous said...

They need to get rid of being associated with LA, leave that to the Dodgers.
They are an Orange County team not LA. They need to go back to "California Angels" or "Anaheim Angels". Let gang members keep the LA.

Anonymous said...

Amen! Anaheim is a suburb of LA Metropolitan Area - like it or not - and should be thankful that Walt Disney and Gene Autry put their insignificant city on the map. They are no more important than other Orange, Los Angeles, Riverside, and San Bernardino County cities who have residents that support the Angels, and they still get the sales taxes. Let it go, Anaheim. You're just a suburb.