Founded in 1973
|Minor league affiliations|
|League||Southern League (1973–present)|
|Major league affiliations|
|Current||Tampa Bay Rays (1999–present)|
|Minor league titles|
|League titles (5)|
|Nickname||Montgomery Biscuits (2004–present)|
|Colors||Butter and blue|
|Mascot||Big Mo (2004-present)|
Spike The Cub (1992-2003)
|Ballpark||Montgomery Riverwalk Stadium (2004–present)|
|General Manager||Michael Murphy|
|Media||MiLB.TV and WSFA, WMSP 740 AM|
The Montgomery Biscuits are a Minor League Baseball team based in Montgomery, Alabama. The team is the Double-A affiliate of the Tampa Bay Rays and plays in the Southern League. The team was founded in Orlando, Florida, in 1973 as the Orlando Twins, an affiliate of the Minnesota Twins. After remaining in the Minnesota minor league organization for 20 seasons, the team became an affiliate of the Chicago Cubs for four seasons and then the Seattle Mariners for one. In 1999, the team became an affiliate of the Tampa Bay Rays, and they have remained in the organization ever since.
Over the years, the club changed names several times. They were the Orlando Twins for 17 seasons, then were known as the SunRays, Cubs, and Rays. The club became known as the Biscuits when it moved from the Orlando area to Montgomery in 2004.
The club played at Tinker Field near downtown Orlando from 1973 until 2000, when they moved to Champion Stadium in nearby Lake Buena Vista, Florida. Since moving to Montgomery in 2004, the Biscuits have played at Montgomery Riverwalk Stadium, a 7,000-seat facility which was built for the club in the downtown area.
The franchise joined the Southern League in 1973 as the Orlando Twins, a minor-league affiliate of the Minnesota Twins, which held spring training in Orlando, Florida at the time. The Orlando Twins played at Tinker Field in downtown Orlando, near the Florida Citrus Bowl Stadium. In 1990, the team was renamed the Orlando Sun Rays. In 1993, the Chicago Cubs became the team's new major-league affiliate, and the team was renamed the Orlando Cubs. While still a Chicago Cubs affiliate, the team renamed itself again in 1997 and became the Orlando Rays. The following year, for one season only, the Seattle Mariners were the Rays' major-league affiliate. The Tampa Bay Devil Rays, an American League expansion team in 1998, assumed the Orlando Rays' major-league affiliation the following year.
The Orlando Rays' last season at Tinker Field was 1999. From 2000 to 2003, the Orlando Rays played in Lake Buena Vista, Florida, in Champion Stadium at Walt Disney World Resort. Despite the fact that the team played in a state-of-the-art stadium that was built in 1997 and used during spring training by the Atlanta Braves, attendance did not meet expectations; after trailing the Southern League in attendance in multiple years, the Rays' owners announced the team would move to Montgomery in 2004 (terminating their 10-year lease with Disney after four seasons).
While in Orlando, the franchise won three Southern League championships: in 1981 (as the Twins), 1991 (as the Sun Rays), and 1999 (as the Rays).
The Biscuits became Montgomery's first Major League Baseball-affiliated team since 1980, when the Montgomery Rebels, a Detroit Tigers affiliate, played their final season in the Southern League at Montgomery's Paterson Field. The Biscuits' owners, Sherrie Myers and Tom Dickson, were selected from six different ownership groups during an extensive search for a public-private partner by the City of Montgomery. Myers and Dickson selected the team's nickname from over 4,000 entries in a "name the team" contest, due in part to tying into indigenous affiliation and potential marketing and pun possibilities (for example, "Hey, Butter, Butter, Butter" or the team's souvenir store, the "Biscuit Basket"). Several successful minor league teams have campy, quirky names to relate to families and kids. During games, biscuits are shot from an air cannon, into the stands. The official team colors are Butter and Blue.
On September 15, 2006, in just their third year of existence, the Biscuits defeated the Huntsville Stars to win the team's first Southern League championship in Montgomery. One year later, in 2007, the Biscuits again defeated the Huntsville Stars to win their second consecutive Southern League championship. They became the first team since the 1975 to 1977 Montgomery Rebels to win back-to-back championships.
Their mascots are "Big Mo", an orange beast that loves biscuits, and "Monty", an anthropomorphized buttermilk biscuit. Monty appears in the logo and on the hat. The mascot for the Orlando Rays was "Spike", a bear. The origin of Spike is unknown but presumed to predate the Devil Rays, as the club has been controlled by the Cubs and by the Twins (who have a bear mascot, T.C. Bear).
In 2014, a new live mascot was introduced and also named with a contest in which 4,800 entries submitted ideas for a micro-mini pot belly pig which became Miss Gravy, Duchess of Pork. Miss Gravy retired to a farm in Wetumpka in 2016.
Major League Baseball players who played for the Biscuits (or earlier incarnations) include:
- Dewon Brazelton
- Jorge Cantu
- Carl Crawford
- Matt Diaz
- Joey Gathright
- Chad Gaudin
- Jonny Gomes
- Toby Hall
- Jason Hammel
- Scott Kazmir
- Kevin Kiermaier
- Evan Longoria
- Seth McClung
- David Price
- Shawn Riggans
- Juan Salas
- James Shields
- Andy Sonnanstine
- B. J. Upton
- Delmon Young
- Stephen Vogt
- Mikie Mahtook
- Taylor Motter
7-day injured list
Television and radio
All Montgomery Biscuits games are televised live on MiLB.TV and select games are also televised live on WSFA. WMSP 740 AM provides radio broadcasts of games. Since 2016, the Biscuits play-by-play commentator is Chris Adams-Wall.
- Reichard, Kevin (May 4, 2017). "Lou DiBella/Montgomery Biscuits Era Begins". Ballpark Digest. August Publications. Retrieved May 4, 2017.
- "Front Office". Montgomery Biscuits. Minor League Baseball. Retrieved May 4, 2017.
- "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2013-09-23. Retrieved 2013-09-21.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
- Meet Big Mo!
- Orlando Rays
- Biscuits’ mascot Miss Gravy to retire to Wetumpka
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Montgomery Biscuits.|