On Thursday, Nov. 9, Big League Utah, a group of Utah leaders pushing to bring an MLB team to Utah, quoted a post on X by a user under the handle, “baseball take of the day.” The post asked Utahns what they think the name of a potential team should be. Many users responded with their ideas, but a few stood out more than others.
One popular suggestion would be to name the team the “Salt Lake Gulls” or “Seagulls.” Seagulls have a strong connection to Utah, being selected as the official state bird in 1955. This is because the seagulls came to Utah’s rescue in the 19th century, eating hordes of crickets that were destroying crops, according to Utah’s Public Online Library.
Naming the potential MLB team after the seagull would follow a baseball tradition of bird-like team names, with teams such as the St. Louis Cardinals, Toronto Blue Jays and the Baltimore Orioles, as one user pointed out.
Another popular animal-related name suggests calling the Utah team the “Salt Lake Cutthroats.” The name would honor the Bonneville Cutthroat Trout, which, of course, is the official state fish for Utah. The subspecies of Cutthroat once lived in the ancient Lake Bonneville which is now the Great Salt Lake. Bonneville Cutthroats today are primarily native to Utah, isolated in smaller populations in mountain streams and lakes of the Bonneville Drainage basin, according to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
The “Salt Lake Golden Spikes” was another common suggestion among fans online. The first Transcontinental Railroad famously came together at Promontory, Utah in May 1869. The union of the railways was signified with a final drive of a golden spike. It’s a great historical moment in U.S. and Utah history, which was even honored with a National Historical Park in Northern Utah. Plus, it does make for a pretty cool name for a Major League Baseball team.
“Salt Lake Trappers” was suggested to pay homage to the Utah-based minor league baseball team of the same name that played between 1985 and 1992. According to an article from The Athletic that remembered the team, it was owned in part by Hollywood icon Bill Murray, who would occasionally even serve beers at Derks Field where the Trappers played.
The Trappers eventually moved to Idaho for a year before coming back to Utah as the Ogden Raptors, who still play today. Salt Lake City ended up with another minor league baseball team, the Salt Lake Bees, which are now moving to South Jordan in the coming years.
Speaking of the Bees, ABC4’s favorite suggestions came in the form of sticking with the Beehive State theming. Some users had the idea of calling the major league team the “Salt Lake Wasps” or the “Salt Lake Stingers.” A few reporters in the ABC4 newsroom mused the idea of renaming the Bees and giving the name to the major league side.
The Beehive theme doesn’t have to stop at the name either. One user suggested designing the proposed Power District ballpark with a beehive theme, complete with golden honey-yellow colors and a hexagonal facade. ABC4 reporters suggested nicknaming the stadium “The Hive” to complete the idea.
The bee and beehive have both long been Utah’s strongest symbols. After all, Utah is nicknamed “The Beehive State.” The honeybee is Utah’s official state insect and the state emblem is the beehive. The new design of Utah’s state flag predominately features a beehive front and center as well.
“For the people of Utah, the beehive symbolizes the Utah community as each person in Utah works together to support and help one another and to create a successful industry,” reads the Utah State Capitol website.
Some other honorable mentions that came from Utahns weighing in on their thoughts included “Mountaineers,” “Pioneers,” “Speedsters,” “Slopes” and “Saints.”
Utah actually having a Major League Baseball team is still a long way off, however. The Associated Press reported that even if MLB moves quickly to expand the league to 32 teams, a new team likely wouldn’t start playing ball until 2028.
There has been no word on what cities would be awarded an expansion team or even a timeline on when league expansion would begin.