Boston Red Sox

By Matt McCarthy,

It’s official: call them the “WooSox.”

The Triple-A affiliate of the Boston Red Sox will keep the Red Sox nickname as they move from Pawtucket to Worcester in 2021. The team made the announcement Monday night and will brand themselves as the WooSox for short.

The organization received more than 100 suggestions for a team name before settling on the WooSox.

The iconic “smiley face” was first designed in Worcester, leading the team to make it the central part of their new logo. The “W” in the WooSox lettering includes a heart, a nod to the city’s “Heart of the Commonwealth” nickname.

The smiley face/emoji man’s swing is supposed to look like Ted Williams’ follow-through.

Construction on the 10,000-seat Polar Park, the new $100 million home of the WooSox, is underway near Worcester’s Kelley Square. The state is planning to redesign the notoriously complex intersection as part of the ballpark project.

The WooSox will become the third minor league sports team in Worcester. The city already has the Worcester Railers hockey team, the ECHL affiliate of the New York Islanders, and the Massachusetts Pirates, an arena league football team. Worcester previously was home to two AHL hockey teams, the Ice Cats and the Sharks.

The Triple-A Red Sox will play one final season in Pawtucket in 2020 before moving north on Route 146 in time for opening day in April of 2021.

You can hear Matt McCarthy on 98.5 The Sports Hub’s own Hardcore Baseball podcast and on various 98.5 The Sports Hub programs. Follow him on Twitter @MattMcCarthy985.