The process to name Wichita's new baseball team has begun.
Wichita Baseball 2020 will release seven potential team names over the next few months to gauge public reaction.
The first name, the River Riders, was shared on social media Thursday morning. There was some initial confusion over whether this was the new name, but team officials later clarified that it is the start of the process.
The names that will be released were drawn from about 3,000 suggestions submitted by fans. Team officials say an official name, logo and team colors will be revealed in November.
Now that everyone is awake, here is how we are going to begin rollin' out some potential identities. Huge thanks to @MissAmericaKS for helping us with this process. Want to see @ToddRadom's work? Checkout https://t.co/TmgQU9UgHR. #RepYour2020 pic.twitter.com/UNY7lhtQGu
— Wichita River Riders (@WichitaBaseball) August 8, 2019
The team is scheduled to begin play in Wichita next spring in a new $75 million stadium along the Arkansas River. Opening Day is scheduled for Tuesday, April 14.
The team relocating to Wichita, the New Orleans Baby Cakes, is finishing up its season. When Wichita officials announced last September that the team was coming, it said the Baby Cakes name and logo would not be used.
Wichita will be the Triple-A affiliate of the Miami Marlins, the highest level of minor league baseball.
Wichita has been without an affiliated baseball team since 2007 when the Wichita Wranglers — the Double-A affiliate of the Kansas City Royals at the time — left for a new stadium built for them in Springdale, Arkansas.
Wichita has not had a Triple-A team since 1984, when the Wichita Aeros left for Buffalo, New York.
Tom Shine is director of news and public affairs at KMUW. Follow him on Twitter @thomaspshine.