"I was pretty dumbfounded. Absolutely flabbergasted."
That was the reaction Clint Stroman had when he found out he had won the New Orleans Baby Cakes' "Name the Team" contest. Stroman won a pair of lifetime tickets to Baby Cakes games, among other prizes.
Stroman's winning entry, which included details on how to incorporate a Mardi Gras theme into the team's rebranding efforts, was one of more than 3,000 submissions during last summer's contest to replace the Zephyrs moniker.
"We are very appreciative of all the passion shown by the community throughout the renaming process," said Baby Cakes Senior Vice President and General Manager Cookie Rojas. "When reviewing all the entries, Clint's really stood apart in providing a vision for an exciting new look of the franchise."
A lifelong baseball fan who grew up attending Texas Rangers games in his native Arlington, Stroman has resided in New Orleans since 2008.
"As soon as I found out, I called one of my friends who was really following the name change and I was like, 'You'll never believe it,'" Stroman said. "Like some people, she kind of disliked the name at first, but it really grew on her."
He will be recognized with a ceremonial first pitch and a night in the owner's suite during the Baby Cakes' opening weekend, April 6-9 against the Memphis Redbirds, something he says is a dream come true.
"Throwing out the first pitch at a baseball game has honestly been a dream of mine my whole life," Stroman said. "I am really looking forward to that. I'm sure I will be on cloud nine that entire day."
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.