Joplin Miners

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Joplin Miners
Founded in 1902
Joplin, Missouri
Mickey Mantle (1950)
Class-level
Previous Class-C (1946–1954, 1934–1942, 1926-32, 1922–1924, 1904–1910)
Class-A (1933, 1917–1921)
Class-D (1914, 1911, 1902–1903)
Minor league affiliations
Previous leagues

Western Association (1934–1954, 1922–1932, 1914, 1905–1911)

Western League (1917-21, 1933)
Missouri Valley League (1902-04)
Major league affiliations
Previous
St. Louis Cardinals (1954)
New York Yankees (1946–1953; 1935–1942)
Boston Red Sox (1934)
St Louis Browns (1933)[1]
Minor league titles
League titles 1910, 1949
Team data
Nickname Joplin Blasters (2015-Present)
Previous names
Joplin Miners (48 Seasons)
Joplin Cardinals (1954)
Joplin Ozarks (1926)
Ballpark Joe Becker Stadium (1917–present)
Previous parks
Cox Park (1902-06)
Miners Park (1907–1916)

The Joplin Miners were a minor league baseball team in Joplin, Missouri that played for 49 seasons between 1902 and 1954. Baseball Hall of Fame Inductees Mickey Mantle and Whitey Herzog played for Joplin. Professional baseball returned to Joplin and Joe Becker Stadium when the Joplin Blasters began play in 2015.

1902 Joplin Miners baseball team

Franchise history[edit]

After early Joplin teams played in 1887 and 1891, the Miners began play in 1902 and were a consistent franchise for the next 50 years. The Miners played in the Western Association (1934–1954, 1922–1932, 1905–1911, 1914), the Western League (1917–21, 1933) and the Missouri Valley League (1902-04).[2]

The Miners were long time affiliates of the New York Yankees (1946–1953; 1935–1942). They were also affiliates of the St. Louis Browns (1933), Boston Red Sox (1934) and the St. Louis Cardinals (1954).

The 1910 Miners finished 90-34 in the Wesetern Association, 22.5 games ahead on 2nd place Enid. They are listed at #66 on the Top 100 Teams by MiLB.com.[3]

In April 1920, Ty Cobb and the Detroit Tigers played an exhibitiongame against the Miners in Joplin.[4]

The team had some split seasons with other locales. The 1909 Miners also played in El Reno, Oklahoma as the El Reno Packers.[5] The 1914 team played some games in Webb City, Missouri, Guthrie, Oklahoma as the Senators and Henryetta, Oklahoma as the Boosters.[6] The 1932 team played in Hutchinson, Kansas, Independence, Missouri and Topeka, Kansas.[7]

The 1952 Miners finished 87-52.[8] The 1950 squad finished 90-46, with an 18-year-old Mickey Mantle hitting .383 with 199 hits, 30 doubles, 12 triples and 26 homers for the Miners.[9][10]

Mickey Mantle, 1951

On January 24, 2014, it was announced that an independent professional team relocated to Joplin to play in a renovated Joe Becker Stadium.[11] Subsequently, the Joplin Blasters of the Independent American Association began play in 2015.[12]

Ball Parks[edit]

The team played at Cox Park in 1902–1906. it was located at 16th & Main.[13] From 1907–1916 the franchise played at Miners Park, located between 2nd and 4th streets off Main Street.[14] The team had multiple home ballparks, including Joe Becker Stadium, and Miners Stadium.[15] In 1917, the team began play in a new Miners Park, now Joe Becker Stadium, located at 1301 East Third Street.[16][17]

Notable players[edit]

Whitey Herzog plaque HOF

References[edit]