Frisco RoughRiders

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"Shreveport Captains" redirects here. For the baseball team, see Shreveport-Bossier Captains.
Frisco RoughRiders
Founded in 1968 in Shreveport, Louisiana
Based in Frisco, Texas since 2003
FriscoRoughRiders.png FriscoRiders.PNG
Team logo Cap insignia
Class-level
Current AA
Minor league affiliations
League Texas League
Division South Division
Major league affiliations
Current Texas Rangers
Minor league titles
League titles 2004
Division titles 2003, 2004, 2008, 2012
Team data
Nickname
  • Frisco RoughRiders (2003–present)
  • Shreveport SwampDragons (2001–2002)
  • Shreveport Captains (1971–2000)
  • Shreveport Braves (1968-1970)
Colors                     Black, Red, Gray, White
Ballpark Dr Pepper Ballpark
Owner(s)/
Operator(s)
Manager Joe Mikulik
General manager Scott Sonju (2006–present)

The Frisco RoughRiders (short form: 'Riders) are currently the Class AA affiliate of the Texas Rangers major league baseball club. The team plays in the Texas League, assigned to the South Division. Prior to 2003, the franchise was based in Shreveport, Louisiana, and were known as the Shreveport Captains (and, for the 2002 season, the Shreveport SwampDragons). In 2003, they were purchased by Mandalay Entertainment in connection with Tom Hicks, former owner of the Texas Rangers and the Southwest Sports Group.[1] Mandalay Baseball moved them to the North Texas city of Frisco and changed their name to the RoughRiders.

They currently play at Dr Pepper Ballpark in Frisco. Opened on April 3, 2003, the stadium seats 10,600 fans.[2] The stadium is both unique and innovative; both bullpens are surrounded by seats and there is a pool area available for rental just beyond the right center field wall.

In 2012, Forbes ranked the Rough Riders as the 4th most valuable franchise in Minor League Baseball.[3]

On June 16, 2014, it was announced that Mandalay Baseball Properties LLC, who owns the Texas Rangers Double-A Affiliate, the Frisco RoughRiders, have entered into a definitive agreement with the CEO and Managing Partner of the Myrtle Beach Pelicans, Chuck Greenberg, as well as RoughRiders President Scott Sonju, for the sale of the Frisco RoughRiders franchise. The agreement is still subject to customary closing conditions, that would include approvals from both the Texas League and Minor League Baseball, as well as a review by the Office of the Commissioner of Major League Baseball. Chuck Greenberg will be Chairman, CEO, as well as the Managing Partner of the newly formed Frisco RoughRiders LP, which is a partnership of local investors who will acquire the RoughRiders. Mr. Sonju is a Co-Managing Partner and he will continue to serve as RoughRiders' president to oversee the day-to-day operations of the team under Mr. Greenberg's leadership.[4][5]

Origins of team name[edit]

"The Rough Riders" was the name bestowed by the American press on the 1st U.S. Volunteer Cavalry Regiment during the Spanish–American War, headed by to-be American President Theodore Roosevelt. The team was named after a historical division in order to comply with the tradition of the major league affiliate, the Texas Rangers, who were named after the Texas Ranger Division.

RoughRiders' Timeline[edit]

2001[edit]

December 3: Frisco Minor League Team is announced

Southwest Sports Group (SSG) and Mandalay Sports Entertainment (MSE) reach an agreement of joint ownership of a Double-A, Texas League franchise to be located in Frisco, Texas.

2002[edit]

February 6: Frisco Baseball Stadium underway

Officials with the Double-A team and representatives of the City of Frisco and Collin County broke ground on a new ballpark to be ready for the 2003 season.

July 4: Frisco RoughRiders unveil team name and logo

At a July 4 Centennial Celebration, the Frisco Professional Baseball Team announced their new name and logo.

September 26: RoughRiders announce affiliation with Texas Rangers

Frisco RoughRiders Professional Baseball announced its Major League affiliation with the Texas Rangers. "We are thrilled to be the Double-A affiliate of the Rangers", said President & General Manager Mike McCall. "A player may be a RoughRider in April and a Ranger by August."

2003 season[edit]

January 21: RoughRiders announce ballpark

The Frisco RoughRiders announced that Dr Pepper/Seven Up, Inc. and the Dr Pepper Bottling Company of Texas have entered into a partnership with the RoughRiders for naming rights to the team's state-of-the-art stadium.

April 3: RoughRiders sell out inaugural Season Opener

In the first ever professional game at Dr Pepper/Seven Up Ballpark, the RoughRiders announce a sellout of over 10,000 fans.

September, 2: Dr Pepper/Seven Up Ballpark named "Best New Ballpark for 2003"

Each year, the award by baseballparks.com goes to the new baseball stadium with the best combination of superior design, attractive site selection and fan amenities.

September 2: First playoff game is played at Dr Pepper/Seven Up Ballpark

The first playoff game for both the RoughRiders and Dr Pepper/Seven Up Ballpark was played as the 'Riders defeated Wichita.

September 13: RoughRiders advance to Texas League Championship Series

The ‘Riders advance to the Texas League Championship Series to face the San Antonio Missions, but lost four games to one in the best-of-seven series.
September 26: RoughRiders set attendance records during inaugural season
Dr Pepper/Seven Up Ballpark witnessed 675,620 fans come through the turnstiles in the RoughRiders’ inaugural season, which ranked fourth overall in all of minor league attendance.

2004 season[edit]

August 30: ‘Riders earn playoff berth for second straight season

The 'Riders finished off a remarkable second half run and clinched the Texas League East Division title at Dr Pepper/Seven Up Ballpark.

September 9: ‘Riders advance to Texas League Championship
The Frisco RoughRiders wasted no time in dispatching the Drillers to clinch the Texas League Eastern Division Title and moved on to face Western Division Champs Round Rock in the Championship Series.
September 18: RoughRiders win Texas League Championship
The Frisco RoughRiders shut down the Express and captured its first Texas League title in just its second year of existence as Frisco won the best-of-seven Texas League Championship Series.

2005 season[edit]

June 21: Frisco hosts Texas League All-Star Game
Andre Ethier leads the East All-Stars over the West, 5–0, with a key RBI-single.

July 28: RoughRiders combine for Perfect Game A.J. Murray, Steve Karsay, and Scott Feldman combined to pitch a perfect game in Corpus Christi. The final score was 3–0 as it was the first no-hit game in the three-year history of the Frisco RoughRiders.

September 4: RoughRiders end season with 58–82 record

2006 season[edit]

June 17: Four RoughRiders are chosen for Texas League All-Star Game
Pitchers Thomas Diamond and John Danks, infielder Adam Morissey, and outfielder Anthony Webster were selected to the Mid-Summer Classic.

September 1: Frisco finishes 2006 season with 72–68 record
RoughRiders finish in third place in the South Division.

2007 season[edit]

June 12: Six RoughRiders selected for Texas League All-Star Game

June 16: Frisco clinches playoff berth
The RoughRiders won the first half title and earned an automatic spot in the Texas League playoffs for the first time since 2004.

September 3: RoughRiders end regular season with franchise-best record
Frisco ended the 2007 season with a regular season record of 85–55, the best ever in RoughRiders’ history.

September 7: Frisco swept in first round of 2007 playoffs

Frisco was defeated three games to none by San Antonio in the first round of the Texas League Playoffs.

September 12: Dave Anderson named Manager of the Year

Leading Frisco to the best record in the Texas League, first-year Manager Dave Anderson was named Texas League Manager of the Year, the first time a Frisco manager earned such an award.

October 6: Mandalay named Baseball Organization of the Year

Mandalay Baseball Properties, the owner and operator of the Frisco RoughRiders was named "Baseball Organization of the Year", by Ballpark Digest.

November 15: Frisco recognized as top Double-A franchise

The RoughRiders were named the 2007 Bob Freitas Award winner for Double-A minor league baseball by Baseball America.

2008 season[edit]

March 29: RoughRiders top Rangers in exhibition game

In this inaugural event, Frisco defeated the big league club in one of the last exhibition games before the regular season for both teams.

April 24: RoughRiders welcome 3,000,000th fan

May 18: Matt Harrison tosses no-hitter

Lefty starter Matt Harrison throws the first no-hitter at Dr Pepper Ballpark and second in franchise history.

June 10: RoughRiders secure playoff spot

Frisco clinches a playoff berth in the Texas League Playoffs with a First Half Championship, the second first-half title in the past two years.

July 7: Feliz debuts with 100 MPH fastball Hard-throwing youngster Neftalí Feliz made his Double-A debut in Frisco with several pitches over 100 MPH.

August 13: Holland dominant in Double-A debut

Lefty Derek Holland struck out 10 in his Double-A debut.

August 28: Scott Little named ‘08 Texas League Manager of the Year

For the second consecutive season, a Frisco manager took home the award and only the second time a team won in back-to-back seasons with different managers.

September 1: Frisco clinches second-half title

For the first time in franchise history, the RoughRiders won both the first and second half titles with a combined record of 84–56.

September 5: RoughRiders win South Division

Frisco sweeps San Antonio and advances to the Championship Series to face Arkansas.

September 15: Frisco falls in final game of Championship Series

The RoughRiders were one win away from a Texas League Championship, but dropped the final game to Arkansas.

2009 season[edit]

April 2009: Rangers first-round draft pick starts season with Frisco

First baseman Justin Smoak, selected by the Rangers in the first round of the June 2008 draft, starts 50 games for the RoughRiders, hitting .328 with 6 home runs and 29 RBI.

June 16: Five RoughRiders selected to 73rd Texas League All-Star Game

Pitchers Jose Diaz and Kasey Kiker, as well as catcher Manuel Pina, outfielder Craig Gentry and first baseman Justin Smoak are all named All-Stars.

July 1: Dr Pepper Ballpark hosts 73rd Annual Texas League All-Star Game.

September 7: The ‘Riders lose 3–0 in Midland to end the regular season and miss out on post-season play.

2010 season[edit]

April 8: Former Rangers’ third baseman Steve Buechele makes his Frisco debut

Behind a strong outing from ‘Riders starter Blake Beavan, Buechele earned his first victory as a Double-A manager, besting the Springfield Cardinals 2–1 on Opening Day.

June 19: ‘Riders clinch First Half South Division Title Go

Tanner Roark earned the win pitching 5.1 innings as the RoughRiders topped the Corpus Christi Hooks 7–3 at Whataburger Field to win the First Half Title.

July 9: Two RoughRiders traded in Cliff Lee deal

Just hours before first pitch in Springfield, Missouri, the ‘Riders learn that second baseman Matt Lawson and righthander Josh Lueke are part of the deal that also sent former ‘Riders Blake Beavan and Justin Smoak to the Seattle Mariners in exchange for Cliff Lee and Mark Lowe.

August 28: Three Rangers rehab at Dr Pepper Ballpark

Cristian Guzmán, Ian Kinsler, and Nelson Cruz bat 1–2–3 for the ‘Riders, but the club gets shutout by Midland 2–0 in front of 11,666 fans (second largest crowd at time of publication).

August 30: Blake Beavan Texas League Pitcher of the Year

After posting a 10–5 record and a 2.78 ERA over 17 starts, the former first round draft pick earns Texas League Pitcher of the Year honors. (At the time of the award, Beavan was pitching for Triple-A Tacoma).

September 11: Post-season comes to and end in Midland

The RoughRiders lose the best-of-five Divisional Round to the Midland RockHounds losing three games to one. The 2010 season ended on this night after a 9–4 loss to the ‘Hounds in Midland.

2011 season[edit]

May 4: Leonys Martin signs with the Rangers

Signed to the second highest contract of its kind, the Cuban defector signed with the Rangers with a five-year major-league contract worth $15.5 million.

June 13: Nine 'Riders named Texas League All-Stars

June 30: Five millionth fan

The milestone of five million fans coming to Dr Pepper Ballpark took place during the game against the Springfield Cardinals. The RoughRiders won 7–6 after the game was tied heading into the bottom of the ninth inning.

August 1: Two RoughRiders traded in Mike Adams deal

Hours before the trade deadline, pitchers Robbie Erlin and Joe Weiland were traded to the San Diego Padres in exchange for Mike Adams.

August 10: Osuna break record

Second baseman Renny Osuna is the new 'Riders all-time hits leader passing Steve Murphy's record of 319 hits. Osuna finished the season with 153 hits bringing his career total with Frisco to 347 hits.

September 10: Post-season run ends

The RoughRiders lose the best-of-five Divisional Round to the San Antonio Missions losing three games to one. The 'Riders ended the regular season with 79 wins and 61 losses.

2012 season[edit]

April 4: Darvish dazzles at the "Doc"

Making his first pitching performance in the Metroplex since signing with Texas for $60 million (after the Rangers paid a $51.7 posting fee to the Hokkaido Nippon Ham Fighters), Yu Darvish strikes out top Frisco prospect Jurickson Profar to begin four scoreless innings in a 6–1 exhibition win over the RoughRiders at Dr Pepper Ballpark.

April 16: Buechele makes Frisco history

Frisco edges Arkansas 2–1 behind a superb outing by Justin Grimm (6.1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 5 K) for the team’s fourth straight win. The victory gives Steve Buechele his 155th win as manager of the RoughRiders, passing Tim Ireland for the most in team history.

May 19: Profar shows age is just a number

The youngest player in all of Double-A baseball, wunderkind shortstop Jurickson Profar extends his hit streak to 29 games in a 13–0 victory over San Antonio. The 19-year-old’s streak would end the next night, but he would keep his on-base streak going until it reached 50 straight games (the longest such streak in Minor League Baseball for 2012) on June 2.

May 26: No stopping Loux

Former Texas A&M ace Barret Loux wins his tenth straight start to begin the season, establishing a new team record for consecutive victories.

June 3: Power surge sends Olt into overdrive

Power hitting prospect Mike Olt finishes his biggest homer binge of the season, blasting two home runs in a game for the third straight contest. Olt went on to lead the Texas League in home runs with 28 despite getting called up to the big leagues in early August.

June 14: Plenty of All-Stars and even bigger news

On the day that nine RoughRiders are named Texas League All-Stars, pitcher Justin Grimm learns that he will start for the Rangers in two days in front of a nationally televised audience. He goes on to strike out seven and allow three runs over six innings in a win over the Houston Astros.

July 31: Brigham becomes a Cubbie

The Rangers trade RoughRiders pitcher Jake Brigham to the Cubs in a deal that brings catcher Geovany Soto to Texas. Brigham would be traded back to Texas in the off-season for Barret Loux.

September 7: Tepesch cages Corpus

Nick Tepesch silences a raucous Whataburger Field crowd with a dominating effort at Corpus Christi as the ’Riders beat the Hooks 5–0 to sweep the South Division Championship Series 3–0.

September 15: Cardinals celebrate at Texas' expense... again

Less than 12 months after the St. Louis Cardinals beat the Rangers in the World Series, the Redbirds’ Double-A affiliate finishes off another championship against a Texas-affiliated squad. The Springfield Cardinals squeak past Frisco 2–1 in Game 4 of the Texas League Championship Series for their first TL title.

History of management[edit]

President/General Manager
Name Years
Mike McCall 2003–2006
Scott Sonju 2006–Present
Senior Manager of Group Sales
Name Years
Andy Benedict 2009–Present
Manager of Broadcasting & Media Development
Name Years
Scott Garner 2003–2009
Aaron Goldsmith 2010–2011
Alex Vispoli 2012–Present
Director of Game Entertainment
Name Years
Gabriel Wilhelm 2007–2012
Gina Pierce 2013–Present

Roster[edit]

Frisco RoughRiders roster
Players Coaches/Other

Pitchers

Catchers

  • 12 Pat Cantwell

Infielders

Outfielders

Manager

Coaches


Injury icon 2.svg 7-day disabled list
* On Texas Rangers 40-man roster
∞ Reserve list
§ Suspended list
‡ Restricted list
# Rehab assignment
Roster updated August 15, 2014
Transactions
More MiLB rosters
Texas Rangers minor league players

Notable alumni[edit]

These players were once, or currently are, part of the RoughRiders (not including any rehab assignment) and have then succeeded to have a Major League appearance.[6]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "About Mandalay Sports Entertainment." Mandalay Entertainment Group. Accessed 23 June 2006
  2. ^ "Double A Ballparks." 2006. Ballparks of baseball. Accessed 24 June 2006.
  3. ^ "How Billionaires Like Warren Buffett Profit From Minor League Baseball Ownership " Forbes. Retrieved on 6 June 2012.
  4. ^ Cutno, Damon. "Pelicans Chairman leads group to buy Rangers Double-A affiliate". WMBF-TV. WMBF-TV. Retrieved 17 June 2014. 
  5. ^ "RoughRiders announce sale of franchise". RoughRiders Official Website. Frisco RoughRiders. Retrieved 17 June 2014. 
  6. ^ 40-man Roster. Texas Rangers official website. Accessed 2006-06-24.

External links[edit]