Traverse City Beach Bums
|Traverse City Beach Bums|
|League||Frontier League (East)|
|Location||Blair Township, Michigan|
|League championships||2 (2001, 2002)|
|Division championships||2 (1996, 2012)|
|Colors||Navy Blue, Gold, White
|Ownership||John & Leslye Wuerfel|
|General Manager||Leslye Wuerfel|
|Media||Traverse City Record-Eagle|
The Traverse City Beach Bums are a professional baseball team based in the Traverse City, Michigan, suburb of Blair Township, in the United States. The Beach Bums are a member of the East Division of the Frontier League, which is not affiliated with Major League Baseball. From the 2006 season to the present, the Beach Bums have played their home games at Wuerfel Park.
The "Beach Bums" name refers to the residents and visitors who come to Michigan's most popular resort town, to spend time on the beach. Traverse City lies on the Grand Traverse Bay, a branch of Lake Michigan. The team's colors of navy blue and gold represent the region's bays and bright summer sunshine.
Wuerfel Park averages well over 200,000 fans per season for Beach Bums home games, ranking near the top of attendance lists in independent baseball. In their first three seasons, the Beach Bums have drawn over 600,000 fans with a mix of loyal, local fans, tourists, and regional baseball fans.
John and Leslye Wuerfel are the managing members of the Beach Bums. Their son, Jason, is the Beach Bums' Vice President and Director of Baseball Operations. Jason Wuerfel lettered four times with the University of Michigan varsity baseball team, and also won the 2003 Wolverine Award for Spirit and Leadership. He played professionally with the Elmira Pioneers, the Mid-Missouri Mavericks, and the Ohio Valley Redcoats. Jason also owns and operates the Beach Bums Baseball Academy, an organization that instructs young baseball players in the Traverse City area.
In November 2008, the Beach Bums named two new coaches with Gregg Langbehn being hired as the manager and Roger Mason accepting the position of pitching coach. Langbehn had previously spent 10 seasons as a coach and manager in the Houston Astros minor league system, while Mason, a Northern Michigan native, spent nine seasons as a pitcher in major league baseball, including a World Series appearance with the 1993 Philadelphia Phillies.
The Beach Bums are Traverse City's first professional baseball team since 1915. Predecessors include the semi-professional Traverse City Hustlers of the 1890s, and the professional Traverse City Resorters, from 1910 to 1915.
Following the 2004 season, the Frontier League granted a franchise for Traverse City, Michigan. However, the league was not sure whether to consider the team for expansion or relocation. In 2005, the Richmond Roosters were purchased by the Wuerfels and moved to Traverse City.
The Beach Bums played their first home game at Wuerfel Park on May 24, 2006, against the Kalamazoo Kings, with a sell-out crowd of 5,825.
|Richmond Roosters (Frontier League)|
|1995||38-32||.543||4th in FL|
|1996||39-35||.527||1st in FL West||Frontier League Division Series: Lost vs. Springfield Capitals 2-1|
|1997||43-37||.538||2nd in FL West||Frontier League Division Series: Lost vs. Evansville Otters 2-1|
|1998||49-31||.612||2nd in FL West|
|1999||40-43||.482||4th in FL East|
|2000||40-43||.482||4th in FL East|
|2001||49-35||.583||2nd in FL East||Frontier League Division Series: Defeated the Dubois County Dragons 2-1.
Frontier League Championship Series: Defeated the Chillicothe Paints 3-0.
|2002||53-31||.631||2nd in FL East||Frontier League Division Series: Defeated the Dubois County Dragons 2-1.
Frontier League Championship Series: Defeated the Washington Wild Things 3-1
|2003||50-39||.562||4th in FL East|
|2004||43-53||.448||5th in FL East|
|2005||39-56||.415||6th in FL East|
|Playoffs||12-7||.632||1 Division Title, 4 Playoff Appearances, 2 Championships|
|Traverse City Beach Bums (Frontier League)|
|2006||57-39||.594||3rd in FL East|
|2007||46-50||.479||4th in FL Central|
|2008||50-46||.521||2nd in FL East|
|2009||42-53||.442||5th in FL East|
|2010||55-41||.573||2nd in FL East||Frontier League Division Series: Defeated the Windy City Thunderbolts 3-1.
Frontier League Championship Series: Lost vs. River City Rascals 1-3
|2011||51-45||.531||3rd in FL East|
|2012||64-32||.667||1st in FL East||Frontier League Division Series: Lost vs. Southern Illinois Miners 0-3|
|Playoffs||3-7||.300||2 Playoff Appearances|
Traverse City Beach Bums roster
|Active (24-man) roster||Coaches/Other|
- Founded: 2006
- Stadium: Wuerfel Park
- Uniform Colors: Navy blue hats and white jerseys are worn for home games, while navy blue hats and grey jerseys are worn for road games. The alternate jersey is navy blue with the "TC" centered on the left-side chest, in gold.
- Logo Design: A gold ring outline in navy blue with "Traverse City" arched inside. The "Beach Bums" wordmark overlaps the bottom of the ring in navy blue and gold, with a baseball splashing in stylized, navy blue waves underlining it. A baseball-playing bear is centered in the design wearing a Beach Bums jersey and cap.
- Mascot: Two American black bears named "Suntan and Sunburn", wearing Beach Bums caps and matching jerseys.
- Current ownership: John & Leslye Wuerfel
- Playoff appearances: (1)