Charlotte Stone Crabs
|Charlotte Stone Crabs
Founded in 1980
Port Charlotte, Florida
Based in Port Charlotte since 2009
|Current||Class A Advanced (1980–present)|
|Minor league affiliations|
|League||Florida State League (1980–present)|
|Major league affiliations|
|Current||Tampa Bay Rays (2007–present)|
|Previous||Los Angeles Dodgers (1980–2006)|
|Minor league titles|
|League titles||1983, 1990|
|Division titles||1983, 1990, 2009, 2010|
|Nickname||Charlotte Stone Crabs (2009–present)|
Vero Beach Devil Rays (2007–2008)Vero Beach Dodgers (1980–2006)
|Ballpark||Charlotte Sports Park (2009–present)|
|Previous parks||Holman Stadium (1980–2008)|
|Cal Ripken, Jr., Ripken Baseball|
|General manager||Joe Hart|
The Charlotte Stone Crabs are a minor league baseball team based in Port Charlotte, Florida. They are members of the Florida State League and are the Class A-Advanced affiliate of the Tampa Bay Rays Major League Baseball (MLB) team.
The Stone Crabs were originally the Vero Beach Dodgers (later Vero Beach Devil Rays), who played in Vero Beach, Florida from 1980 to 2008. The team relocated to Port Charlotte after being purchased by Ripken Baseball. They play their home games at Charlotte Sports Park, and are named for the Florida stone crab, which is indigenous to the Charlotte County region.
The Charlotte Stone Crabs were formerly known as the Vero Beach Dodgers, later the Vero Beach Devil Rays. The franchise was founded in 1980, and played at Holman Stadium, the former spring training home of the Los Angeles Dodgers. The team was affiliated with the Dodgers from 1980 to 2006.
In 2007 the franchise's affiliation changed to the Tampa Bay Devil Rays; they were then renamed the Vero Beach Devil Rays. Under their new name they won the 2007 Florida State League championship. On August 25, 2008, it was announced that the Vero Beach franchise was sold to Ripken Baseball, which resulted in a relocation of the franchise to Port Charlotte, Florida to become the Charlotte Stone Crabs.
The Stone Crabs play their home games at Charlotte Sports Park in Port Charlotte, Florida, now the Tampa Bay Rays spring training home. On December 20, the team announced that Jim Morrison will return as manager, having managed the Vero Beach team in 2008.
The Charlotte Stone Crabs have had many Major League players in their existence. Jake McGee was the first Stone Crabs player to make it to the majors. B. J. Upton, on a rehab assignment in April 2009, was the first batter in franchise history. Other big leaguers who have spent time with the Stone Crabs include: Rocco Baldelli, Grant Balfour, Jason Bartlett, Chad Bradford, Pat Burrell, Brad Hawpe, Jeremy Hellickson, Matt Joyce, Scott Kazmir, Carlos Peña, Fernando Pérez, Shawn Riggans, Brian Shouse, Andy Sonnanstine, and Mitch Talbot.
Charlotte Stone Crabs roster
- Official Charlotte Stone Crabs website
- "Ripken Baseball buys Vero Beach franchise" FSL news
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