A general view of Minute Maid Park from behind home plate in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images)

Astros' New Owner Won't Change Team's Name

Jim Crane was approved as the new Astros owner by a unanimous vote, and the team will move to the AL in 2013.

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8 Total Updates since November 17, 2011
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Upon Further Review, Astros Will Remain 'Astros'

Boy, if I didn't know any better I might think this entire affaire de nom was just a put-on.

Just last week, Astros owner Jim Crane took over the franchise and immediately, if somewhat obliquely, suggested that a change of names might be in the offing after 57 seasons of the Astros.

Well, as it turns out, not so much. Zachary Levine:

New owner Jim Crane ended a week of speculation and rare attention on a national level and anticipated backlash among Houstonians, saying he would not change the name of the club – a possibility he floated last week.


"One thing that we are not going to change is the name. We received strong feedback and consensus among season ticket holders and many fans, and we will not change the name Astros. The Houston Astros are here to stay."


Still under consideration are changes to the uniforms and field (including Tal’s Hill). Those would not be for this season, rather the Astros’ first year in the American League in 2013.

Someone had to know this would happen, right? Sports fans are intensely conservative. If you asked the fans of any baseball team in the majors about changing the name, a huge majority would respond in the negative. And especially if the franchise is even moderately old; a huge majority of Astros fans have never known another name. And don't want to.

So what happened in the last week? Jim Crane took over and immediately said something that garnered a great deal of publicity, not only in Houston but around the country. Maybe in Canada even. Then, just a week later, he pronounces that the fans have spoken and of course the Astros will remain the Astros. Everybody's a winner, and the new owner is a hero.

Well played, sir. Well played, indeed. Now, about those guys you're going to put on the field this season...


Astros Name Change? Just Say No, Says Houston Writer

Jerome Solomon writes the Ultimate Astros blog for the Houston Chronicle. And he gives a big thumbs-down to any proposed Houston Astros name change:

Astroworld is gone, the Astrodomain is now Reliant Park, and the Astrodome is a blight on the city skyline.

But the Astros are Houston’s team, and despite what idiot politicians who didn’t grant us a space shuttle say, Houston is Space City. You may have purchased the franchise, but Astros is the name that belongs to the baseball team in Space City.

From Aspromonte, Watson, Dierker and Wynn to Cedeno, Cruz, Richard and Ryan to Bagwell, Biggio, Berkman and Oswalt, MLB stars in Houston have been Astros.

Solomon’s argues that new owner Jim Crane should “change the names on the back of the jerseys” instead of the name on the front; he’s got a point, especially coming off the worst season in Houston major league history, a 106-loss season for the Astros, the first 100-loss year in franchise history.

A poll attached to the post has, at this writing, 18% support for a name change, but also a 38% vote for “change the name and the uniforms”. The Astros have changed uniforms six times since becoming “Astros” in 1965.

So it would appear this is still an open question, even among Astros fans.


Should The Houston Astros Change Their Name?

If you think your team's nickname has been that way forever, for many MLB teams, that's not the case. Will the Astros become the next club with a new name?


Astros' New Owner Won't Commit To Keeping 'Astros'

Jim Crane officially took over as the Houston Astros' owner, and announced some fan-friendly changes in 2012 while refusing to rule out the possibility of changing the team's name.


Houston Astros Sale Approved, Move To AL Confirmed

The Houston Astros have officially been sold to Jim Crane, as the owners unanimously approved the sale. Jerry Crasnick had the quickest thumbs on Twitter, so he gets credit for the scoop. The bigger news, of course, is that sale means that after 50+ years in the National League, the Houston Astros will move to the American League.

From Brian McTaggart:

MLB commissioner Bud Selig has announced sale of Astros to Jim Crane is approved, and team will move to AL in 2013

The Astros' sale will lead to the team playing in the AL West, with each league having 15 teams. The odd number in each league will require far more interleague play, to which Selig said:

"I don't think any schedule is perfect, but this will be very good."

Look at Selig, doing Madison Avenue's work for them. "Major League Baseball: Imperfect, But Still Very Good" is a slogan worthy of a t-shirt. Well done.

The Astros are expected to move to the American League before the 2013 season. This is the second time that a team has switched leagues in baseball history, following the Milwaukee Brewers, who moved to the National League in 1998 to make room for the expansion Rays and Diamondbacks.


The Unspoken Letters Regarding The Astros AL Move: 'DH'

Will the adoption of the DH in the National League be an inevitable result of the Astros' upcoming move to the American League?


The Houston Astros Are Moving, And The Fans Will Survive

In time for the 2013 regular season, the Houston Astros will shift to the American League, and a number of their fans are very upset. Those fans, though, are going to stick with the team that they chose.


Just What Is Jim Crane Buying In The Houston Astros?

Drayton McLane is finally handing over the Astros, but only after the team was run into the ground.

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