Burlington Announces New ‘Sock Puppets’ Nickname

A new era in Burlington baseball begins now. The franchise is still part of the Appalachian League, but now will operate in conjunction with USA Baseball as a summer college team instead of as a part of the affiliated minor leagues.

With that change comes a new name. The Burlington Royals are no longer. Now, the team will be known as the Burlington Sock Puppets.

“Burlington has always represented another team’s and another city’s brand,” Sock Puppets GM Anderson Rathbun said in a press release. “It’s an incredibly exciting opportunity here that we now get to have something that reflects our team and reflects our community.”

The name Sock Puppets is a nod to the Burlington, N.C. area’s textile heritage, while the logo was designed by Dan Simon of Studio Simon. 

“As we explored all possible identities for the team and engaged locally with so many different people, the stories and responses revolved around the uniqueness of what makes Burlington so special—and ultimately it’s the people.” Burlington owner and president Ryan Keur said in a release. “The people here in Burlington, both those new to the area and those that have been here for so long, have this desire to be great. It is a community that works well together and has transitioned from industry to industry over the past 100 years.”

The 2021 Appalachian League season is slated to begin on June 5 and will run through Aug. 7.

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