KANNAPOLIS, N.C. (WBTV) - They’ve been known as the Phillies, the Boll Weevils, and the Intimidators, and on Wednesday night the minor league baseball team in Kannapolis unveiled its newest incarnation, the Cannon Ballers.
The new name for the team was revealed in a special ceremony in front of the historic Gem Theater. Fans submitted more than 1,200 entries, or suggestions for the new name. Thousands of fans joined the ball club in the newly revitalized downtown for the highly anticipated unveiling of the new name of their professional baseball team
After the name and mascot were revealed, fans were welcome to enjoy a street festival with food trucks, inflatables for kids, circus performers, music and fireworks, at 8 p.m.
Team officials say the new identity embodies the circus-like atmosphere of a Minor League Baseball game while paying homage to the foundations of Kannapolis as the town the Cannon Family built.
The team will play in the new stadium being built in downtown Kannapolis. Referred to as the “Sports and Entertainment venue,” the 4,900 seat capacity site is one of the anchor projects for the redevelopment of downtown Kannapolis. The new ballpark sits on land that formerly housed Cannon Mills, the world’s largest textile factory.
The team introduced the resilient Cannon Baller, a hard-nosed but playful daredevil. They also encouraged fans to suggest names for the mustachioed, All-American character that will represent the City of Kannapolis on the field and throughout the community. Team colors include a patriotic palette of red, white and blue (dark royal and light), plus an accent color of yellow.
“After months of considering input from our fans and stakeholders, we are thrilled to introduce the Cannon Ballers. The new team name instills community pride and exemplifies the experience we want all of our guests to enjoy at the Kannapolis Sports & Entertainment Venue. Although the Cannon Ballers players and action on the field will always be the main event, the surrounding carnival of fun off the diamond will truly make a trip to our ballpark a memorable experience,” stated team General Manager Matt Millward.
The home and road uniforms start with a ballcap that features the Cannon Baller soaring through the air after being shot out of his cannon. “Cannon Ballers” is emblazoned on the white home jersey with red braiding and red numbers on the front.
Cannon Ballers merchandise is now available online at KCBallers.com. Through Sunday, October 27th, area fans can visit the team’s pop-up retail store next to the Gem Theatre located at 111 West 1st Street in downtown Kannapolis daily from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Season tickets for the inaugural season at the Kannapolis SEV are on sale now. The Cannon Ballers take the field in Kannapolis on Thursday, April 16 at 7 p.m.