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Spinners want 'Yankees' teams out of youth leagues

There is more than one way to eliminate the Yankees. Just ask the Lowell Spinners.

The Red Sox Single-A affiliate announced today that it is on a mission to get rid of the name "Yankees" from youth league teams around New England. Not coincidentally, the team is trying to change those monikers to the "Lowell Spinners."

"When you are a kid playing baseball it is pure fun and worrying about what team you are on should be the least of your concerns," Spinners general manager Tim Bawmann said in a press release. "It becomes an issue where kids are devastated when they find out they are on the Yankees. Many kids actually pray they will not be on the Yankees when the rosters and teams are announced."

The Spinners estimated that close to half of the youth baseball leagues in New England include a team named the "Yankees," and the team said it has already begun contacting organizations in an attempt to convince them to adopt the name change.

If a league agrees to eliminate their Yankee teams and replace them with the Spinners, the team said it will pay the cost of replacing the uniforms and allow those squads to play at the minor league club's home field -- Edward LeLacheur Park -- before a Spinners game this summer.

So far, the Spinners claim, three organizations have agreed to the switch: the Chelmsford Little League, Methuen Instructional League, and Tewksbury Youth Baseball.

What's the Spinners' motivation behind this project?

"We figured the easiest and best solution was replace those Yankee teams with the Spinners, who are part of the Boston Red Sox system," Bawmann said. "We would like to make a point that this promotion is all in good fun and is merely meant to appeal to Red Sox Nation in New England."

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