What were the New York Yankees originally called?

What were the New York Yankees originally called?

What were the New York Yankees originally called?

Photo by Hiroko Masuike/The New York Times

The New York Yankees, one of the most iconic and successful teams in the history of baseball, have a rich and storied past that dates back to the early 20th century. However, the team wasn't always known as the Yankees. In fact, they underwent several name changes before becoming the renowned franchise we know today.

The Baltimore Orioles

The origins of the New York Yankees can be traced back to Baltimore, Maryland, where the team was originally established in 1901 as the Baltimore Orioles. The Orioles were one of the eight charter franchises of the American League, which was established as a major league to rival the well-established National League.

Relocation to New York

In 1903, the team was purchased by William S. Devery and Frank J. Farrell and relocated to New York City. The team played their home games at Hilltop Park in northern Manhattan and was initially known as the New York Highlanders. The name was derived from the team's playing location, which was situated on one of the highest points on the island of Manhattan.

The Birth of the Yankees

In 1913, the team's ownership changed hands once again when it was acquired by a group of investors led by Colonel Jacob Ruppert and Captain Tillinghast L'Hommedieu Huston. It was under their ownership that the team underwent a significant transformation, including a change in name. The owners officially rebranded the team as the "New York Yankees" in 1913, a name that would become synonymous with baseball greatness.

The Inspiration Behind the Name

The exact inspiration behind the name "Yankees" has been a subject of debate over the years. Some sources suggest that the name was chosen to reflect the team's connection to the northern states during the American Civil War, as "Yankee" was a term commonly used to describe Union soldiers. Others believe that the name was simply a nod to the team's location in New York, which had long been known as the "Yankee City."

Legacy of the New York Yankees

Since adopting the name "Yankees," the team has gone on to become one of the most successful and celebrated franchises in the history of baseball. The Yankees have won numerous championships and have been home to legendary players such as Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig, Joe DiMaggio, Mickey Mantle, and Derek Jeter, further solidifying their status as a powerhouse in the world of sports.

The New York Yankees' journey from the Baltimore Orioles to the New York Highlanders and finally to the New York Yankees is a testament to the team's enduring legacy and impact on the sport of baseball. The name change in 1913 marked a pivotal moment in the team's history, setting the stage for decades of unparalleled success and creating a brand that is recognized and revered by fans around the globe.


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