Myrtle Beach Pelicans
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Myrtle Beach Pelicans
Myrtle Beach Pelicans
Founded in 1999
Myrtle Beach, South Carolina
MyrtleBeachPelicansLogo.PNGMBPelicansCapLogo.PNG
Team logoCap insignia
Class-level
CurrentClass A-Advanced
Minor league affiliations
LeagueCarolina League (1999-present)
DivisionSouthern Division
Major league affiliations
CurrentChicago Cubs (2015-present)
Previous
Minor league titles
  • 1999*
  • 2000
  • 2015
  • 2016
*co-champions with Wilmington
  • 1999
  • 2000
  • 2002
  • 2008
  • 2011
  • 2013
  • 2014
  • 2015
  • 2016
Team data
NicknameMyrtle Beach Pelicans (1999-present)
Previous names
  • Danville 97s (1998)
  • Durham Bulls (1980-1997)
ColorsPelicans blue, sun gold, midnight blue, white                    
Mascot
  • Splash
  • Rally Shark
  • Deuce
  • Champ
BallparkTicketReturn.com Field at Pelicans Ballpark (1999-present)
Previous parks
Owner(s)/
Operator(s)
Myrtle Beach Pelicans LP
ManagerSteve Lerud
General ManagerRyan Moore
MediaTuneIn Radio

The Myrtle Beach Pelicans are a Minor League Baseball team in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, and the Class A-Advanced affiliate of the Chicago Cubs.[1] The Pelicans are members of the Carolina League and most recently won the league's championship in 2016.[2] Home games are played at TicketReturn.com Field, which opened in 1999 and seats up to 6,599 fans.[3] From their inaugural season through 2010, the Pelicans were affiliated with the Atlanta Braves, before spending four seasons as a Texas Rangers affiliate from 2011 to 2014. The team's affiliation with the Chicago Cubs began in 2015 and is currently in place through 2022.[4]

Team history

Previously, this franchise was known as the Durham Bulls, but relocated following the 1997 season as a result of the expansion of the Triple-A International League into Durham, North Carolina, where the new franchise assumed the "Bulls" name. It spent the 1998 season in Danville, Virginia, as the Danville 97s, awaiting a move to Myrtle Beach while their new stadium, Coastal Federal Field, was under construction. When then their home ballpark opened its gates on April 12, 1999, for the franchise's first game, 5,521 fans came to see the Pelicans play the Potomac Cannons.[3] In the first at bat, Pelicans pitcher Luis Rivera struck out Cannons hitter Esix Snead looking.[3] The first two hits at the stadium were home runs for each team, first by Potomac's Andy Bevins, and later that same game by Myrtle Beach's Ryan Lehr.[3]

Their ballpark has since been renamed TicketReturn.com Field at Pelicans Ballpark, which is a family-friendly stadium with a speed pitch, obstacle course, and moon bounce on the concourse. In 2004, Baseball America rated it the second-best Class-A level ballpark in the United States, and the best in the Carolina League in 2009.[3] For four consecutive seasons (2011-2014), Stadium Journey ranked the Pelicans as the top stadium experience in the Carolina League,[5] and one of the publication's "Top 50 Stadium Experiences" in all of sports,[3] while TripAdvisor named the team the third-best attraction in Myrtle Beach.

Notable games

Splash, one of the team mascots

In their first season, the Pelicans advanced to the 1999 Carolina League Mills Cup Championship series. The best-of-five series against the Wilmington Blue Rocks was tied 2-2, with the deciding Game 5 set to be played in Myrtle Beach, when the series was cancelled because of Hurricane Floyd. The two teams were named co-champions for that season.

Myrtle Beach won both the first and second-half Southern Division titles in 2008 under Rocket Wheeler, who was named Carolina League Manager of the Year. The following season, Jason Heyward played over half the year in Myrtle Beach en route to being named Baseball America's 2009 Minor League Player of the Year.

On July 3, 2014, the Pelicans home game with the Winston-Salem Dash was broadcast on the CBS Sports Network, the first time the Pelicans were on live national television.[6][7]

Front office changes

In early 2006, Capitol Broadcasting Company announced plans to sell the Pelicans. The current owner is Myrtle Beach Pelicans LP, a group led by lawyer Chuck Greenberg.[8]

On November 20, 2012, General Manager Scott Brown left to join the Triple-A Charlotte Knights of the International League.[9] A month later, on December 21, 2012, the Pelicans hired Andy Milovich to become the club's Vice President and General Manager.[10] By January 14, 2015, Milovich was promoted to President and General Manager.[11]

On September 16, 2014, the Myrtle Beach Pelicans reached an agreement on a player development contract (PDC) with the Chicago Cubs, beginning with the 2015 season.[1] The current PDC makes the Pelicans the Class A-Advanced affiliate of the Cubs through 2022.[4]

Playoffs

  • 1999 season: Defeated Kinston 2-1 in semifinals; tied Wilmington 2-2 in championship.
  • 2000 season: Defeated Lynchburg 3-0 to win championship.
  • 2002 season: Lost to Kinston 2-0 in semifinals.
  • 2008 season: Defeated Winston-Salem 3-1 in semifinals; lost to Potomac 3-1 in championship.
  • 2011 season: Lost to Kinston 3-1 in semifinals.
  • 2012 season: Lost to Winston-Salem 2-1 in semifinals.
  • 2013 season: Lost to Salem 2-0 in semifinals.
  • 2014 season: Defeated Salem 2-1 in semifinals; lost to Potomac 3-1 in championship.
  • 2015 season: Defeated Winston-Salem 2-1 in semifinals; defeated Wilmington 3-0 to win championship.
  • 2016 season: Defeated Salem 2-1 in semifinals; defeated Lynchburg 3-1 to win championship.

Notable former players

Several Pelicans have gone on to play in the major leagues. Some of these are:[12]

Retired numbers

Myrtle Beach has honored three of its members by retiring their uniform numbers.[13]

No. Player Position Seasons
2 Rafael Furcal SS 1999-2000
18 Rocket Wheeler Manager 2006-2010
43 Bruce Dal Canton Pitching coach 1999-2007

Roster

See also

References

  1. ^ a b "Myrtle Beach Pelicans Change Franchise Affiliation to Chicago Cubs". WMBF. Worldnow and WMBF. September 17, 2014. Retrieved 2015.
  2. ^ Vittas, John (September 14, 2016). "Pelicans win 5-3 for second straight Carolina League championship". Myrtle Beach Pelicans. Minor League Baseball. Retrieved 2016.
  3. ^ a b c d e f "Facts and Figures - Myrtle Beach Pelicans TicketReturn.com Field". Myrtle Beach Pelicans. Minor League Baseball. Retrieved 2015.
  4. ^ a b Blondin, Alan (October 31, 2018). "Pelicans extend deal: See how long Chicago Cubs farmhands will play in Myrtle Beach". The Sun News. Retrieved 2018.
  5. ^ Swaney, Paul (September 21, 2014). "Ranking the Ballparks of the Carolina League". Stadium Journey. Retrieved 2015.
  6. ^ "Myrtle Beach Pelicans to Make National TV Debut Thursday on CBS Sports Network". The Sun News. July 1, 2014. Retrieved 2014.
  7. ^ Barnett, Nathan (June 30, 2014). "Pelicans game to be broadcast on CBS Sports Network on July 3". Myrtle Beach Pelicans Official Website. Myrtle Beach Pelicans. Retrieved 2014.
  8. ^ "Chuck Greenberg: Chairman & Managing Partner". Myrtle Beach Pelicans. Retrieved 2010. Chuck Greenberg assumed the role of President & Managing Partner of the Myrtle Beach Pelicans on May 31, 2006 after his ownership group purchased the club from Capitol Broadcasting Company. On January 14, 2009, Greenberg assumed the role of Chairman & Managing Partner when the organization announced Todd Parnell as President.
  9. ^ "Pelicans GM Brown Leaving MB for Triple-A Charlotte". Myrtle Beach Pelicans. Retrieved 2012.
  10. ^ "Pelicans Name New GM, Season Opens April 4th". Grand Strand Sports Report. Retrieved 2012.
  11. ^ Barnett, Nathan (January 14, 2015). "Pelicans Announce Front Office Changes". Myrtle Beach Pelicans. Minor League Baseball. Retrieved 2015.
  12. ^ "Road to the Show". milb.com. Retrieved 2017.
  13. ^ "Rafael Furcal - No. 2 Jersey Retired" (PDF). 2016 Myrtle Beach Pelicans Media Guide. Minor League Baseball. 2017. p. 105. Retrieved 2017.

External links


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