The History of the New York Yankees Logo

The New York Yankees came into existence in a time when a minor league called the Western League changed its name to what should be the much more recognizable American League, thus starting up some serious competition between the newcomer and its established counterpart in the National League. In those times, the American League started up a number of baseball teams in cities that were underserved by the National League, with the Baltimore Orioles being an excellent example. However, it wasn’t too long before the Baltimore Orioles was moved over to New York City, where the baseball team became the New York Highlanders.

There is more than one explanation for why the New York Highlanders were called the New York Highlanders. One is that the baseball team was situated in Upper Manhattan, meaning it had an elevated location. Another is that the baseball team president Joseph Gordon had a Scottish-Irish background, meaning that the name was meant to honor this. Whatever the case, the New York Highlanders managed to pick up a number of nicknames, which ranged from the New York Americans to the New York Invaders. However, the nickname of New York Yankees was already seeing use in 1904, having been coined by a sports editor at New York Press because it was much easier to fit into the headlines. Over time, this nickname became more and more widespread, so much so that the baseball team underwent an official name change to become the New York Yankees in 1913. Something that has remained true ever since.

How Has the New York Yankees Logo Changed Over Time?

Since the baseball team that would become the New York Yankees started up as the Baltimore Orioles, it should come as no surprise to learn that there are logos associated with that period of its existence. In fact, there are not one but two logos from that period, though it is interesting to note that they share the simple nature of most of their counterparts. First, there was an orange “O” that was colored black on the inside, which saw use for a single season in 1901. After which, it was succeeded by a capital “B” for the second season in 1902, which was neither orange nor black but rather a deep shade of blue. Naturally, the “O” was meant to reference the baseball team’s name while the “B” was meant to reference the baseball team’s home city.

Upon becoming the New York Highlanders, the baseball team went through a number of logos, so much so that it was changing its logo in each of the seasons from 1903 to 1908. In each case, the logo would consist of a “N” and a “Y,” which were meant to reference the baseball team’s new home. However, there were some differences in the look of the two letters as well as their positions relative to one another.

It wasn’t until 1909 that the New York Highlanders acquired the first version of one of the most iconic logos that can be found in the entire MLB. It was in that season that the baseball team started using the “N” interlocked with the “Y,” which continued to see use until the 1947 season. In that period of time, there were a couple of changes made to the logo, with one being a change to the font of the letters and the other being a change to the color of the letters. Otherwise, the logo has remained more or less the same, sufficiently so that interested individuals should have no problems recognizing it even now.

In the 1947 season, the New York Yankees started using a predecessor to the logo that the baseball team uses now. In short, it consisted of the Yankees name over a baseball, with the vertical stroke in the “K” formed by a baseball bat topped with a stars and stripes decorated top hat. Later for the 1968 season, the logo received a small change in that the once powder blue underbrim of the top hat was changed to white, but otherwise, said logo has managed to endure to the present time.

Final Thoughts

There are some baseball teams that like to change their logos on a constant basis, but the New York Yankees isn’t one of them. As such, while it might be interesting to see what would happen if it decided to make such a move, the chances of that happening are not particularly high to say the least.


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