Joseph Gravellese, North Shore Navigators Sports Information Department
After months of deliberation, the Navigators’ alligator mascot has a name: Chomps. Matt O’Connor, a 12-year-old from Lynnfield, submitted the winning name, beating out hundreds of entries submitted to the official naming contest. O’Connor will receive the grand prize: four season tickets for life, as well as a Navigators cap and t-shirt.
“I like the name,” said Phil Rosenfield, Swampscott native and owner of the North Shore Navigators. “It’s onomatopoeic. It sounds really good. Kids will love it.”
Marcus Wilson, the Navigators’ director of marketing, concurred with Rosenfield. “It’s what we plan to do to the competition this summer,” he laughed. “We’re going to chomp them. We’re going to eat them up.”
Matt’s mother, Joan O’Connor, said that she read some of the suggested names in the Daily Item and thought her son would be able to come up with a more creative name.
“My mother was reading through the newspaper and though, what the heck, why not enter?,” said Matt. “So I thought Chomps would be a good name. It reminded me of [the movie] Happy Gilmore.”
O’Connor, who had already planned on attending Navigators games this summer, said that he is very excited for the upcoming season. “I mostly want to see the team play hard and try their best, and hopefully win a lot of games,” he said. He had attended North Shore Spirit games in the past, and hopes that the Navigators can continue Fraser Field’s fun and successful baseball history.
The second-prize winner, James Cowdell, 19, of Lynn, submitted “Renegator.” Kenneth Dulong of Revere won third prize for his pick, “Navi.” They will each be presented with a Navigators hat and t-shirt. All of the prize winners have been invited to the ballpark to be honored in an on-field ceremony.
Other popular submissions which did not make the final cut included “Ivan,” “Compass,” “Aly,” and “Captain.”
“The important thing was to pick a fun name that the kids will love to shout out,” continued Rosenfield. “Looking around the league, Sanford has ‘Bruce E. Moose,’ and Newport has ‘Gully’ the seagull. We wanted something like that.”
Chomps and the rest of the North Shore Navigators will be making their debut on Saturday night against the Vermont Mountaineers at Fraser Field. The Navigators are the newest members of the NECBL, an elite, wood-bat summer league featuring some of the best collegiate players from around the country. The Navigators will host 23 home games this season, including exhibitions against the US Olympic team on June 14th and the Dominican Republic national team on July 10th. The Navigators will also hold firework displays on June 7, June 28, July 19, and July 26th. For more information, visit the team’s website at www.nsnavs.com.