MISSOULA – Pitchers and catchers will begin reporting to spring training by the end of February which means baseball is right around the corner.
The Missoula Osprey made a big announcement Monday that they will be changing their team name for the 2020 season.
Missoula’s Pioneer league baseball team has called the Garden City home since 1999 with the Osprey name and logo but after 20 years that era is ending.
“That’s right, we are going to rebrand the franchise and it’s going to be the fans job to help us make that happen,” Missoula Osprey Executive Vice President Matt Ellis said on Monday.
“We want this to be a collaborative effort. After 20 great seasons of Osprey baseball, we want our fans to help us define what our next 20 years are.”
Missoula minor league teams have had a couple of different names in the past including the Highlanders and the Timberjacks.
Now the Osprey organization thinks that giving the fans the chance to pick the franchises next name will give the community a special connection to their team — and the options are endless.
“What we are doing is we are challenging are market and our fans. We’re saying ‘hey, help us out think about Missoula, what makes Missoula great,” Ellis said.
“I mean, is it our Native American roots? Is it Lewis and Clark? Is it Hellgate? Is it the logging industry? Is it the wildlife, the rivers all of our natural resources? Smokejumpers, culture, art, winter, summer or downtown? What makes Missoula special to you as a fan?” Ellis asked.
The move is being made in an attempt to make an Osprey game the best outing in Missoula.
“We want Western Montana to think that Missoula Osprey Baseball is the best fan friendly positive experience they can possibly have,” Ellis said. “And to add to the fan experience the organization will also continue to improve Ogren park.”
We are investing a lot of new things into the ballpark which you will see some announcements later this spring as we start unveiling some of our plans for this year,” Ellis said.
“We are going to invest in some new neighborhoods and concession areas in the ballpark. We are going to put some new technology in — maybe a new video board for example. Do a lot of fun stuff that are going to make the ballpark a great experience,” Ellis concluded.
Click here to visit the Osprey website and submit your name suggestion.
Reporting by Connor McCauley for MTN News