The Atlanta Braves announced the name of their new ballpark during their groundbreaking ceremony in Cobb County, Ga., a suburban of Atlanta.
The Braves will play in the soon-to-be SunTrust Park, named after the Atlanta-based SunTrust Banks, Inc., one of the nation’s largest banking organizations which boasts a 25-year relationship with the team.
SunTrust chairman and CEO William H. Rogers Jr. used to the platform to announce a $100,000 donation from the SunTrust Foundation to the Hank Aaron Chasing the Dream Foundation as homage to Major League Baseball’s all-time home run king.
The philanthropic gesture did little, however, to stem the criticism of the stadium’s name. Still, SunTrust brass are pleased at helping to write a new chapter in the history of the Braves.
“This is a once-in-a-generation opportunity to partner with a great organization that shares our values for winning and serving the community,” Rogers said in a statement to press. “This partnership provides SunTrust increased visibility on a regional and national level through a truly unique mixed-use development that will attract fans and visitors throughout the year. Importantly, it will help us reach more people as we fulfill our bank’s purpose of lighting the way to financial well-being.”
The Braves are scheduled to take ownership of their new stadium at the commencement of the 2017 season. The move will take them from their current location in the economically deprived area near downtown Atlanta and will be located on the outer edge of Atlanta’s bustling northwest side at the intersection of I-75 and I-285 in the bustling Cumberland CID. The stadium will be sandwiched comfortably by surrounding development that includes a vibrant atmosphere with unique shops, restaurants and entertainment venues that is accessible 365 days a year, not only on Braves game days.
“The new ballpark constitutes a new chapter in Atlanta Braves baseball, and we are excited that SunTrust has decided to build upon our decades-long relationship and embark on this journey with us,” said Atlanta Braves Chairman and CEO Terry McGuirk. “Both of our organizations have deep roots in Atlanta and loyal fans throughout the Southeast and across the nation. We couldn’t imagine a more perfect partner and look forward to seeing the first pitch at SunTrust Park in 2017.”
Unfortunately, not many of the fans are as excited as the Braves and SunTrust braintrust are over the name of the new playing field, SunTrust Stadium. In fact, many are downright repulsed that the beloved team will be christened with the name of a financial institution.
Many took to social media to articulate their indignation. Take a look at a sampling of the responses.