Pawtucket Red Sox

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Pawtucket Red Sox
Founded in 1970
Pawtucket, Rhode Island
PawtucketRedSox.png PawtucketRedSoxCap.png
Team logo Cap insignia
Class-level
Current Triple-A (1973–present)
Previous Double-A (1970–1972)
Minor league affiliations
League International League
Division North Division
Previous leagues
Eastern League (1970–1972)
Major league affiliations
Current Boston Red Sox (1970–present)
Minor league titles
League titles 1973, 1984, 2012, 2014
Division titles 1977, 1991, 1994, 1996, 2003, 2011, 2013
Team data
Nickname Pawtucket Red Sox (1970–1975, 1977–present)
Previous names
Rhode Island Red Sox (1976)
Colors Navy, red, white
              
Ballpark McCoy Stadium (1970–present)
Owner(s)/
Operator(s)
Heirs of Ben Mondor
Manager Kevin Boles
General manager Lou Schwechheimer
Female mascot, Sox. The male mascot is Paws.

The Pawtucket Red Sox (known colloquially as the PawSox) are the minor league baseball Triple-A affiliate of the Boston Red Sox and play their games in the International League. The team plays their home games at McCoy Stadium in Pawtucket, Rhode Island. They are the only professional baseball team in Rhode Island. Their most recent championship win was in 2014.

Team history[edit]

Eastern League franchise (1970–72)[edit]

The first team to be dubbed the Pawtucket Red Sox debuted at McCoy Stadium in 1970 as a member of the Double-A Eastern League. The franchise, owned by former Major League shortstop Joe Buzas, had spent the previous five seasons (1965–69) as the Pittsfield Red Sox after playing in four different Pennsylvania cities — Allentown, Johnstown, York, and Reading — over seven years (1958–64).

After three seasons, Pawtucket's Eastern League franchise moved to Bristol, Connecticut, in 1973 to make room for the Triple-A PawSox. Carlton Fisk, the future Baseball Hall of Fame catcher, played for the Eastern League PawSox in 1970. Shortstop Rick Burleson and first baseman Cecil Cooper are among the players who toiled for both the Double-A and Triple-A editions of the team. The franchise played for 10 seasons as the Bristol Red Sox before moving to New Britain in 1983; it still exists as the New Britain Rock Cats, an affiliate of the Colorado Rockies beginning in 2015.

The Cleveland Indians had also placed an Eastern League club in Pawtucket, in 1966–67. The Pawtucket Indians moved to Waterbury, Connecticut, in 1968. The Pawtucket Slaters, a Boston Braves farm club in the Class B New England League, represented the city in the late 1940s.

Roots in Toronto and Louisville[edit]

The Triple-A team that is now the Pawtucket Red Sox began in 1925 as the Toronto Maple Leafs. After the American Association and its Louisville Colonels franchise folded in 1962 and the American League owners voted down Charlie O. Finley's agreement to move the Kansas City A's to Louisville in 1964, Louisville was ready for the return of baseball. In 1968 the Maple Leafs, the Red Sox' top minor league club since 1965, were bought by Walter J. Dilbeck and moved to Louisville where they became the new Louisville Colonels and retained their affiliation with the Red Sox. They played at Fairgrounds Stadium on the Kentucky State Fairgrounds. While in Louisville, star players included Carlton Fisk (1971), Dwight Evans (1972), and Cecil Cooper (1972). The Louisville Colonels made the International League playoffs in 1969 and 1972.

Early struggles and bankruptcy (1973–76)[edit]

However, in 1972 the Kentucky State Fair Board remodeled Cardinal Stadium so it could accommodate football. The renovations made the stadium unsuitable for baseball; among other things, it was far too large for a Triple-A team. However, the stadium was later used by the latter-day Louisville Redbirds club. Following the 1972 season the Louisville Colonels moved to Pawtucket and became the Pawtucket Red Sox. The team was a success on the field, led by future major leaguers Cecil Cooper and Dick Pole, winning the 1973 Governors' Cup Championship in their inaugural year in the league over the Charleston Charlies which they followed up by defeating the Tulsa Oilers of the American Association to win the Junior World Series. The following season the team finished 30 games below .500 and in 1975, while the parent club was on their way to the World Series, the PawSox finished with 53–87. Following another sub-.500 season in 1976 the franchise went bankrupt, unable to pay off $2 million worth of debt.

The Modern era (since 1977)[edit]

Although it appeared the Red Sox's stay in the Pawtucket area was about to come to an end, retired businessman Ben Mondor stepped in and made sure the team remained in the city. What Mondor got was a new franchise; although to outsiders it would appear as if nothing had changed since the team name remained the same. So it was really in 1977 that the current Pawtucket Red Sox, and PawSox, were born.

The average attendance for Pawtucket games went from 1,000 fans per game in 1977 to nearly 9,000 in 2000. Mondor and team president Mike Tamburro oversaw the transformation of McCoy Stadium from an aging 1942 relic into its renovated form. And while keeping the price of tickets at $6 and $10,[1] parking is free. The PawSox usually lead the league in attendance, and in 2005 set a franchise record with 688,421 tickets sold during the year. Kevin Youkilis played for the team in 2003, and completed a streak he started while in Portland: he reached base in 71 consecutive games, tying future teammate Kevin Millar's minor-league records for consecutive games reaching base.

In addition to their success at the box office, the PawSox have excelled in the field. In 2000, Pawtucket set an all-time franchise record for victories with 82, as the team completed their fifth-straight winning season. Three years later the PawSox would top their own record by winning 83 games. In 2008, they won 85 games. Pawtucket has fielded a winning team in 18 seasons since 1977, a span that includes five first place IL finishes and the 1984 team that defeated the now-defunct Maine Guides 3–2 to win the 1984 Governors' Cup trophy for their second championship in Pawtucket Red Sox history. In 2012, the PawSox defeated the Charlotte Knights to win the Governors' Cup for a third time.

The origins of PawSox are traced back to the first season in which Mondor owned the club. Three weeks before the 1977 season began the team lacked uniforms. Former Boston GM Haywood Sullivan stepped in and sent Pawtucket 48 sets of old home and away uniforms from the parent club. Although the home uniforms were fine for the team to use, the road uniforms had "Boston" stitched across the chest, which was a problem. Then Pawtucket GM Mike Tamburro, who is the organization's president, suggested using the name "PawSox" across the front, with each unstitched "Boston" letter replaced with one that spelled "PawSox". Thus, the PawSox name was born out of the necessity of a uniform crisis.

Mondor died on October 3, 2010, at the age of 85. His widow, Madeleine, became the new majority owner of the PawSox.[2]

"The Longest Game"[edit]

The PawSox played in and won the longest game in professional baseball history, a 33-inning affair against the Rochester Red Wings at McCoy Stadium. The game started on April 18, 1981. Play was suspended at 4:07 a.m. at the end of the 32nd inning. The game did not resume again until June 23 when the Red Wings returned to Pawtucket. Only one inning was needed, with the PawSox winning 3–2 in the bottom of the 33rd when first baseman Dave Koza drove in second baseman Marty Barrett with a bases-loaded single off Cliff Speck. Major League Baseball Hall of Famers Cal Ripken, Jr. and Wade Boggs played in the game.

On June 23, 2006, the PawSox celebrated the 25th anniversary of "The Longest Game" with events and festivities when they played the Columbus Clippers.

Perfect games[edit]

  • Tomokazu Ohka pitched a nine-inning perfect game for the Pawtucket Red Sox on June 1, 2000. Ohka retired all 27 batters he faced in a 2–0 win over the Charlotte Knights, and he needed just 76 pitches to toss the first nine-inning perfect game in the International League since 1952.
  • On August 10, 2003, Bronson Arroyo pitched the fourth nine-inning perfect game in the 121-year history of the International League as the PawSox beat the Buffalo Bisons 7–0 at McCoy Stadium. He needed 101 pitches to throw his masterpiece (73 strikes), struck out nine, and got 10 fly outs and eight ground outs from the Buffalo 27 batters. He went to a three-ball count to just three hitters all game. At the end of the month, he was with the big league club until the 2005 offseason, when the Red Sox traded him to the Cincinnati Reds.

Hall of Fame[edit]

Several PawSox players and personnel have been inducted into the International League Hall of Fame. They are owner Ben Mondor, manager Joe Morgan, outfielder Jim Rice, third baseman Wade Boggs, and team president Mike Tamburro. Several former PawSox players have also been inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, New York, including Carlton Fisk, Wade Boggs, and Jim Rice.

Titles[edit]

The PawSox have won the Governors' Cup, the championship of the IL, three times, and played in the championship series seven times. They have also played in the championship of Triple-A baseball on two occasions: in 1973 they defeated the Tulsa Oilers 4 games to 1 in the Junior World Series, and in 2012 they fell to the Reno Aces by a score of 10–3 in the one game Triple-A National Championship.

Notable former players[edit]

(*) = rehab assignment

Yearly results[edit]

Year W L .PCT Finish GA/GB Manager
1970 68 70 .493 4th Eastern League −9.5 Matt Sczesny
1971 63 76 .453 7th Eastern League −16 Billy Gardner
1972 61 79 .436 7th Eastern League −23 Don Lock
1973 78 68 .534 2nd International League* −1 Darrell Johnson
1974 57 87 .396 4th International League −31 Joe Morgan
1975 53 87 .379 8th International League −32.5 Joe Morgan
1976 68 70 .493 5th International League −20 Joe Morgan
1977 80 60 .571 1st International League +2 Joe Morgan
1978 81 59 .579 2nd International League −4 Joe Morgan
1979 66 74 .471 5th International League −19.5 Joe Morgan
1980 62 77 .446 7th International League −20.5 Joe Morgan
1981 67 73 .479 6th International League −21.5 Joe Morgan
1982 67 71 .489 5th International League −14.5 Joe Morgan
1983 56 83 .403 8th International League −26.5 Tony Torchia
1984 75 65 .536 4th International League* −7.5 Tony Torchia
1985 48 91 .345 8th International League −30.5 Rac Slider
1986 74 65 .532 3rd International League −5.5 Ed Nottle
1987 73 67 .521 4th International League −8 Ed Nottle
1988 63 79 .444 3rd IL East −14.5 Ed Nottle
1989 62 84 .425 4th IL East −21.5 Ed Nottle
1990 62 84 .425 4th IL East −27.5 Ed Nottle (through 6/26)

Johnny Pesky (from 6/27)

1991 79 64 .552 1st IL East +3.5 Butch Hobson
1992 71 72 .497 2nd IL East −13.5 Rico Petrocelli
1993 60 82 .423 4th IL East −14.5 Buddy Bailey
1994 78 64 .549 1st IL East +7 Buddy Bailey
1995 70 71 .492 3rd IL East −2.5 Buddy Bailey
1996 78 64 .549 1st IL East +5.5 Buddy Bailey
1997 81 60 .574 2nd IL East −2 Ken Macha
1998 77 64 .546 3rd IL North −3 Ken Macha
1999 76 68 .528 2nd IL North −2 Gary Jones
2000 82 61 .573 3rd IL North −3 Gary Jones
2001 60 82 .423 5th IL North −31 Gary Jones
2002 60 84 .417 5th IL North −31 Buddy Bailey
2003 83 61 .576 1st IL North +4 Buddy Bailey
2004 73 71 .507 2nd IL North −10 Buddy Bailey
2005 75 69 .521 2nd IL North −7 Ron Johnson
2006 69 75 .479 5th IL North −16 Ron Johnson
2007 67 75 .472 4th IL North −16.5 Ron Johnson
2008 85 58 .594 2nd IL North −2.5 Ron Johnson
2009 61 82 .427 5th IL North −21 Ron Johnson
2010 66 78 .458 4th IL North −21.5 Torey Lovullo
2011 81 61 .570 1st IL North +2 Arnie Beyeler
2012 79 65 .549 2nd IL North* −5 Arnie Beyeler
2013 80 63 .559 1st IL North +3.5 Gary DiSarcina
2014 79 65 .549 2nd IL North* −2.5 Kevin Boles

(*= Won Governors' Cup)

Playoff history[edit]

Year W L Result Round W L Result Round W L Result Round
1973 3 2 Beat Tidewater 1st round of playoffs 3 2 Beat Charleston Governors' Cup championship 4 1 Beat Tulsa Junior World Series
1977 3 1 Beat Richmond 1st round of playoffs 0 4 Lost to Charleston Governors' Cup championship
1978 3 2 Beat Toledo 1st round of playoffs 3 4 Lost to Richmond Governors' Cup championship
1984 3 1 Beat Columbus 1st round of playoffs 3 2 Beat Maine Governors' Cup championship
1986 1 3 Lost to Rochester 1st round of playoffs
1987 1 3 Lost to Tidewater 1st round of playoffs
1991 0 3 Lost to Columbus Governors' Cup championship
1992 1 3 Lost to Scranton IL East championship
1994 1 3 Lost to Syracuse IL East championship
1996 1 3 Lost to Rochester IL East championship
1997 1 3 Lost to Rochester IL East championship
2003 3 2 Beat Ottawa 1st round of playoffs 0 3 Lost to Durham Governors' Cup championship
2008 1 3 Lost to Scranton 1st round of playoffs
2011 0 3 Lost to Lehigh 1st round of playoffs
2012 3 1 Beat Scranton 1st round of playoffs 3 0 Beat Charlotte Governors' Cup championship 0 1 Lost to Reno Triple-A National Championship
2013 3 2 Beat Rochester 1st round of playoffs 1 3 Lost to Durham Governors' Cup championship
2014 3 0 Beat Syracuse 1st round of playoffs 3 2 Beat Durham Governors' Cup championship 0 1 Lost to Omaha Triple-A National Championship

Current roster[edit]

Pawtucket Red Sox roster
Players Coaches/Other

Pitchers

Catchers

Infielders

Outfielders

Manager

Coaches


Injury icon 2.svg 7-day disabled list
* On Boston Red Sox 40-man roster
∞ Reserve list
§ Suspended list
‡ Restricted list
# Rehab assignment
Roster updated on September 17, 2014
Season ended – Final roster
Transactions
More MiLB rosters
Boston Red Sox minor league players

AAA managerial history[edit]

Name Record Win Pct. Duration
Darrell Johnson 78–68 .534 1973
Joe Morgan 601–658 .477 1974–82
Tony Torchia 131–148 .470 1983–84
Rac Slider 48–91 .345 1985
Ed Nottle 302–338 .472 1986–90 (June 26)
Johnny Pesky 32–41 .438 1990 (June 27 – September 3)
Butch Hobson 79–64 .552 1991
Rico Petrocelli 71–72 .497 1992
Buddy Bailey 502–497 .503 1993–96,2002–04
Ken Macha 158–124 .560 1997–98
Gary Jones 218–211 .508 1999–2001
Ron Johnson 357–359 .499 2005–2009
Torey Lovullo 66–78 .458 2010
Arnie Beyeler 160–126 .559 2011–2012
Gary DiSarcina 80–63 .559 2013
Totals 2883–2938 .495 1973–2013

Broadcasters[edit]

Pawtucket is a springboard for Major League Baseball broadcasters. As of 2013, there are six former PawSox radio and one television announcer broadcasting for Major League Baseball teams. Listed after are the years the broadcaster was with the Red Sox.

In addition, Dan Hoard is now the broadcaster for the NFL's Cincinnati Bengals. He was with the PawSox from 2006-2011. On April 24, 2013, it was announced that current broadcaster Bob Socci would become the New England Patriots play-by-play broadcaster starting with the 2013 season.[3]

The announcers for the Pawsox Radio Network are Jeff Levering and Bob Socci.[4] Select games are broadcast on NESN by Eric Frede and Ken Ryan and on Cox Sports by Jeff Levering and Bob Montgomery.[5]

Other former Pawtucket announcers include Bob Kurtz of the NHL's Minnesota Wild, Dave Shea, who spent time with the Washington Nationals, Bob Rodgers, Jack LeFaivre, Matt Pinto, and Mike Stenhouse.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]

Preceded by
Pittsfield Red Sox
Boston Red Sox
AA affiliate

1970–1972
Succeeded by
Bristol Red Sox
Preceded by
Louisville Colonels
Boston Red Sox
AAA affiliate

1973–present
Succeeded by
incumbent