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team name was changed to the "Flying Squirrels". The name the Richmond Flying Squirrels was chosen through a Richmond Times-Dispatch readers' "name-the-team-contestThe Richmond Flying Squirrels are a Minor League Baseball team based in Richmond, Virginia. The team, which is a part of the Eastern League, is the Double-A affiliate of the San Francisco Giants major league club, and plays at The Diamond. The Flying Squirrels have been affiliated with the Giants since 2010, making it the longest-running active affiliation in the Giants organization among teams not owned by the Giants. The Squirrels were previously known as the Connecticut Defenders. The Flying Squirrels mark affiliated baseball's return to Richmond after a one-year absence prompted by the relocation of the former Triple-A International League's Richmond Braves to Lawrenceville, Georgia in 2009, where they are now called the Gwinnett Stripers.
The Erie SeaWolves are an American professional baseball team based in Erie, Pennsylvania. They compete in Minor League Baseball (MiLB) as a member ofThe Erie SeaWolves are an American professional baseball team based in Erie, Pennsylvania. They compete in Minor League Baseball (MiLB) as a member of the Eastern League's Southwest Division, serving as the Double-A affiliate of the Detroit Tigers. The team was founded in 1989 and began playing in Erie for the 1995 season. The SeaWolves currently play their home games at UPMC Park in downtown Erie, a part of the Louis J. Tullio Plaza along with Erie Insurance Arena and the Warner Theatre. The "SeaWolves" name refers to the city's location along Lake Erie as well as their original affiliation with the Pittsburgh Pirates. "Sea wolf" is a historical epithet for sailors who engaged in piracy. Coincidentally, the "Pirates" moniker originated with the Pittsburgh Alleghenys' pursuit of second-baseman and Erie native, Lou Bierbauer, in 1891. Bierbauer started his career with the Philadelphia Athletics of the American Association, later joining the Brooklyn Ward's Wonders of the newfound Players' League for the 1890 season. When the Players' League folded in 1891, most of the members went back to their former National League or American Association clubs. However, Bierbauer never signed a contract to return to the Athletics, and the Alleghenys were determined to sign him before other teams noticed. Ned Hanlon, manager of the Alleghenys, braved the icy conditions of Erie's Presque Isle peninsula during a snowstorm to commit Bierbauer. When the Athletics learned about this secret deal, they objected to Bierbauer's signing and demanded his return to their club. An official with the American Association also objected to Bierbauer's contract with the Alleghenys, calling their actions "piratical." Yet, the league ruled in favor of the Alleghenys, and they acquired Bierbauer as a free agent. Soon afterward, both players and their fans referred to the team as the "Pittsburgh Pirates." In 1891, the club officially rebranded as the "Pirates," making light of their critics.