Louisville shortens name to Bats

By Will Kimmey

October 2, 2001


Louisville’s new logo

Louisville’s baseball team will begin the 2002 season as the proud owners of an International League championship and a new name.

Known as the RiverBats the past three seasons, the team has shortened its name to the Bats. Greensboro of the South Atlantic League goes by the same name, and Louisville had to get the Greensboro’s permission to use the name.

“We’re in a totally different market, and we don’t use the same logos,” Greensboro team president Bill Blackwell said.

Greensboro still retains trademark rights to the Bats moniker.

“They were very accommodating,” Louisville team president Gary Ulmer said. “If they had wished that we not use the name then we would not have pursued it. But since they’re in a different league in a different city it was OK.”

Louisville management is pleased with the change.

“It’s a little more appealing,” Ulmer said. “And in all honesty we had to field a few questions about what exactly is a RiverBat?”

Fans have affectionately referred to the team as the Bats since the name was decided in a community-wide name-the-team contest. Because the team plays in Louisville Slugger Park, Bats was a popular choice.

“We just had to be the Something-Bats,” Ulmer said. River was added because the park sits near the base of the Ohio River, which separates Louisville from Cincinnati.

Louisville unveiled a new logo and will develop a new uniform and hat before the season.