NYC Baseball Team Renames Itself 'Pizza Rats'

The fans asked, now the fans shall receive.

By Ethan L. Johns
June 12, 2018

Image: Staten Island Yankees

You undoubtedly know Pizza Rat as that small, resourceful (and possibly trained) little critter that took New York City and the world by storm after it was caught on film, cheese slice in paw, dragging it down a set of subway steps.

Now you can say hello to the rodent’s equally athletically-talented outer-borough friends: the Staten Island Pizza Rats. No, it’s not a colony of dead-tailed groundlings; it’s the new name for the Staten Island Yankees—the short-season minor league baseball affiliate team of the New York Yankees.

For the team’s five home games this season, players will don new Staten Island Pizza Rat jerseys as they scurry around the diamond.

Why would a baseball team start calling itself the Pizza Rats, you might be asking? Well in 2016 the Staten Island Yankees, seeking to differentiate themselves from their major league family, asked their fans to choose between five team names. Obviously, “Pizza Rats” beat out “Bridge Trolls” and “Rock Pigeons.” And obviously, the Staten Island Yankees opted to keep their name.

While this may be the best thing to happen in sports since New Jersey’s Trenton Thunder started calling itself the Thunder Pork Roll, not everybody is so enthusiastic.

“I bear no affinity for [the New York Yankees], but if you are walking away from the arms of the most recognizable brand in professional sports, it has to be for something better than a rodent dragging fresh mozzy spread across a thin crust,” said Staten Island Borough President Jimmy Oddo in a statement, according to the New York Daily News. “For 50 bucks and a bottle of Jim Beam, in 12 hours my fantasy baseball buddies and I could have come back with something much better than this.”

To see the Staten Island Pizza Rats in action, you can purchase tickets in advance or buy them at Richmond County Bank Ballpark. Pizza Rats merchandise (that’s the best part, after all) is available on the Pizza Rats Baseball website.

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About Ethan L. Johns

Ethan is the Food News Writer at Genius Kitchen. An expert on the Parisian bistrot, he likes bitters and salted butters, and is no fan of dessert unless it's made with fruit. His hobbies include reading up on the history of borscht and attempting to roll perfect couscous by hand. Twits & Instagram @EthanLJohns