New baseball team may be called Nationals

Nov. 5, 2004 at 5:48 PM

WASHINGTON, Nov. 5 (UPI) -- In the rush to get merchandise in Washington, D.C. stores before Christmas, the name of Major League Baseball's newest team may be the Nationals.

Changing the name of a team in professional baseball usually involves focus groups, marketing executives and polling data and it usually takes 12 to 18 months.

However, in an effort to exploit fan fever and sell tickets, merchandise and sponsorships for the nation's capital's return to Major League Baseball, the time to change the name of the Expos, used in Montreal for 36 seasons, is expected to take about two weeks, the Washington Times reported Friday.

Washington Mayor Anthony Williams has lobbied heavily against the resurrection of the name Senators; the name used by both of Washington's previous major league teams.

"I've articulated that I do not support Senators as a name. I believe that is the wrong name," Williams said.

Williams said he doesn't want to use the name Senators because the District of Columbia has no senators or voting representative in Congress.

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