The Oneonta Tigers of Oneonta, New York, played 11 seasons in the New York-Penn League. For that entire span, they served as the Class A-Short Season affiliate of the Detroit Tigers. The O-Tigers were born in 1999, when the former Oneonta Yankees had to scramble to find a new parent club after being abandoned in favor of the new Staten Island Yankees. The club linked up with Detroit and took on a COTOB identity.
They kept the same block O cap logo that they had as the O-Yankees, but shifted to the Tigers’ colors and added the fierce cartoon tiger that was a prominent part Detroit’s branding at that time. While the parent club had the tiger slinking through the Old English D, Oneonta had it making a much more comfortable pass through the block O. They also had an Old English O for their jerseys, and an orange-crowned alternate/batting practice cap. That’s about all there is to say about the brand.
On the diamond, things weren’t much more interesting. In the lower levels of the minors, big name alumni are usually few and far between, and Oneonta was no exception. In their eleven years, the biggest name to wear the tiger-through-O cap is Curtis Granderson, though Matt Joyce and Jair Jurrjens merit mention. Unfortunately, is difficult to find many good images of O-Tigers online, and apparently nobody snapped a phone of Granderson while he was talking his lumps in Oneonta.
Oneonta had long been a staple city in the NYPL, but there was a growing trend toward abandoning smaller upstate cities in favor of more vital markets and an expanded league footprint. Before the 2010 season, it was announced that the team would be moving to Dodd Stadium in Norwich, Connecticut, which the Connecticut Defenders had recently vacated. The relocated team was known as the Connecticut Tigers for the entire teens decade before rebranding as the Norwich Sea Unicorns.