The Visalia Rawhide, in conjunction with Minor League Baseball (MiLB), has announced the Rawhide will be re-branded as the Visalia Toros for a four-game series against the Stockton Ports from August 3 through August 6 to be named “Taquiza y Toros” weekend. Taquiza y Toros, as a part of the “Es Divertido Ser Un Fan” initiative from MiLB, will be the first of its kind in Rawhide franchise history and will feature new and unique promotional elements to celebrate the heritage of the Hispanic population in Visalia and Tulare county.
“The Central Valley, and Tulare County in particular, has an incredibly rich Hispanic heritage and we’re excited to pay homage to it over this weekend,” said Rawhide/Toros General Manager Jennifer Reynolds. “This is a full re-brand of the Rawhide with the goal of welcoming even more people into the Rawhide, and now the Toros, family. We encourage all members of the local community to join us for the weekend and make Visalia baseball history.”
The Toros re-brand will include all aspects of the Rawhide organization: the Visalia players will wear all-new uniforms and hats for the series and an all-new merchandise line will be available to fans with the new Visalia Toros emblem. Furthermore, Recreation Park will be transformed for the four-day event.
Food vendors representing various Hispanic style food varieties will be at the ballpark for the Taquiza y Toros weekend only, with foods such as tacos, tamales, papusas, and more. The Rawhide will also be bringing in new and distinct beer flavors to celebrate the weekend and will be offering margarita specials in the Hall of Fame Club. The event will feature a festive atmosphere and will include live music throughout the events, postgame fireworks on August 4, and a water slide in the Kid’s Corral on August 6.
The Taquiza y Toros weekend will be dedicated to the memory of George “Cuco” Serrato. Serrato was an employee of the Visalia Parks and Recreation department whose love for the game played an instrumental part in bringing baseball to the North side of Visalia. Serrato’s vision led to the beginning of the Visalia Angels baseball team. Because of his contributions to the Visalia baseball community, the baseball field at Crowley Elementary School was named in his honor in 1992. Mary Serrato, a relative of George, has been an employee of the Visalia baseball club for nearly two decades.
The re-branding of the Rawhide to the Toros is part of the “Es Divertido Ser Un Fan” initiative from MiLB, which coincides with MiLB’s “It’s Fun to be a Fan” slogan. The campaign’s goal is to become a nationwide event by 2018 that will help to include, and be more welcoming to, the Hispanic fan base that is integral to the game of baseball at all levels. This season, four teams, the Rawhide, the Las Vegas 51s, which will become the Las Vegas Reyes de Plata, the Charlotte Knights, to be renamed the Charlotte Caballeros, and the Kane County Cougars, will re-brand throughout the final month of the MiLB regular season
“One of the pillars of Minor League Baseball is to create an environment where all individuals feel welcome and included in our ballparks,” said Minor League Baseball President Pat O’Conner. “It is important to us that our teams are reflective of the communities in which they reside, offering a memorable entertainment experience for all members of those communities.”
2017 marks the 71st year of baseball in Visalia at Recreation Ballpark. The Rawhide are chasing their fifth consecutive playoff berth. For tickets and more information, visit Rawhidebaseball.com or call 559-732-4433. Follow the Rawhide on Social media on Twitter (@VisaliaRawhide), Facebook (TheRawhide), Instagram (@visaliarawhide) and SnapChat (visaliarawhide).