Southern League (baseball)

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Southern League
SouthernLeague.png
Southern League logo
SportBaseball
Founded1964
PresidentLori Webb[1]
No. of teams10
CountryUSA
Most recent
champion(s)
Jackson Generals (2018)
Most titlesBirmingham Barons (7)
ClassificationDouble-A
Official websitewww.southernleague.com

The Southern League is a Minor League Baseball league that operates in the Southern United States. Classified a Double-A league, it is headquartered in the Atlanta suburb of Marietta. The league acquired its name in 1964, after the South Atlantic League, which had started in 1936, renamed itself to Southern League.

Origins[edit]

The original Southern League existed from 1885 to 1899. A new league, the Southern Association, was formed in 1901, consisting of twelve teams. The Southern Association shut down after the 1961 season.

In 1964, the original South Atlantic League (nicknamed the Sally League and not related to the current league of the same name, formerly the Western Carolinas League) changed its name to the Southern League. The original South Atlantic League was a mid- to higher-classification circuit that played from 1904 to 1917, 1919 to 1930 (when it was known as the South Atlantic Association), 1936 to 1942, and 1946 to 1963. The old South Atlantic League grew from Class C status to Class B (through 1942) and then Class A (until 1962). In its final season, it was elevated to Double-A.

Makeup[edit]

The Southern League is divided into two divisions, North and South. Before 2005, the divisions were East and West; however, the move of the Greenville Braves to the Jackson, Mississippi, area after the 2004 season led to a realignment.

The current league president is Lori Webb; the position was held by Steve DeSalvo as interim President for a few months due to the March 2012 death of former major league first baseman Don Mincher, who had held the position from 2000 to 2011 (the first year as an interim President).[2][3]

In 2012, the Carolina Mudcats relocated to Pensacola, Florida to become the Pensacola Blue Wahoos.[4] In 2015, the Huntsville Stars relocated to Biloxi, Mississippi to become the Biloxi Shuckers.

Current teams[edit]

Current team locations:
  North Division
  South Division
Division Team MLB Affiliation City Stadium Capacity
North Birmingham Barons Chicago White Sox Birmingham, Alabama Regions Field 8,500[5]
Chattanooga Lookouts Cincinnati Reds Chattanooga, Tennessee AT&T Field 6,362[6]
Jackson Generals Arizona Diamondbacks Jackson, Tennessee The Ballpark at Jackson 6,000[7]
Montgomery Biscuits Tampa Bay Rays Montgomery, Alabama Montgomery Riverwalk Stadium 7,000[8]
Tennessee Smokies Chicago Cubs Kodak, Tennessee Smokies Stadium 6,412[9]
South Biloxi Shuckers Milwaukee Brewers Biloxi, Mississippi MGM Park 6,076[10]
Jacksonville Jumbo Shrimp Miami Marlins Jacksonville, Florida Baseball Grounds of Jacksonville 11,000[11]
Mississippi Braves Atlanta Braves Pearl, Mississippi Trustmark Park 8,480[12]
Mobile BayBears Los Angeles Angels Mobile, Alabama Hank Aaron Stadium 6,000[13]
Pensacola Blue Wahoos Minnesota Twins Pensacola, Florida Admiral Fetterman Field at Community Maritime Park 5,038[14]

Current team rosters[edit]

League timeline[edit]

Pensacola Blue WahoosMobile BayBearsBiloxi ShuckersHuntsville StarsPacific Coast LeagueAmerican Association (20th century)Nashville SoundsJackson GeneralsMemphis ChicksInternational LeagueCharlotte KnightsMontgomery BiscuitsOrlando RaysMobile White SoxJacksonville Jumbo ShrimpMississippi BravesGreenville BravesSavannah IndiansMobile A'sMontgomery Rebels (baseball team)Carolina LeagueCarolina MudcatsLynchburg White SoxSouth Atlantic LeagueSouth Atlantic LeagueMacon PeachesTennessee SmokiesKnoxville SmokiesColumbus Confederate YankeesChattanooga LookoutsCharlotte Hornets (baseball)Birmingham BaronsSouth Atlantic LeagueWestern Carolinas LeagueAsheville Tourists

League members Dixie Association Other Current League Other Defunct League

  • In 1971, the Southern League and Texas League were both down to seven teams so they formed the Dixie Association for one season. They played interlocking schedules but held their own separate playoffs.

Complete list of teams (1964–present)[edit]

South Atlantic League teams (prior to 1964)[edit]

Past champions[edit]

League champions have been determined by different means since the Southern League's formation in 1964. Through 1970, champions were simply the regular season pennant winners. A postseason playoff series to crown a champion was established in 1979.[15]

The Birmingham A's/Barons have won 7 Southern League championships, the most among all teams in the league, followed by the Jacksonville Suns (6) and the Montgomery Rebels (5). Among active franchises, Birmingham has won 7 championships, the most in the league, followed Jacksonville (6) and the Mobile BayBears (4).[15]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Personnel and Staff". Southern League. Minor League Baseball. Retrieved July 27, 2017.
  2. ^ "Southern League Names First Woman President". www.chattanoogan.com. Retrieved 16 August 2016.
  3. ^ "Don Mincher Bio". southern.league.milb.com. Retrieved 16 August 2016.
  4. ^ "Blue Wahoos Get Approval from MLB". www.milb.com. Retrieved 16 August 2016.
  5. ^ "Regions Field Birmingham Barons". Minor League Baseball. January 27, 2012. Retrieved May 4, 2015.
  6. ^ Knight, Graham (July 27, 2010). "AT&T Field". Baseball Pilgrimages. Retrieved May 4, 2015.
  7. ^ Knight, Graham. "The Ballpark at Jackson". Baseball Pilgrimages. Retrieved May 4, 2015.
  8. ^ "Riverwalk Stadium Information". Minor League Baseball. February 25, 2013. Retrieved May 4, 2015.
  9. ^ Reichard, Kevin (May 1, 2015). "Smokies Park / Tennessee Smokies". Ballpark Digest. Retrieved May 4, 2015.
  10. ^ Harris, Chris (February 12, 2015). "A Walking Tour of MGM Park". Minor League Baseball. Retrieved May 4, 2015.
  11. ^ Knight, Graham (August 16, 2003). "Baseball Grounds of Jacksonville – Jacksonville Suns". Baseball Pilgrimages. Retrieved February 23, 2014.
  12. ^ "Mississippi Braves Stadium Information". Minor League Baseball. November 13, 2008. Retrieved May 4, 2015.
  13. ^ "Hank Aaron Stadium Info". Minor League Baseball. March 10, 2009. Retrieved May 4, 2015.
  14. ^ Pillon, Dennis (April 20, 2012). "Pensacola's Class AA Baseball Fever Still Going Strong". Press-Register. Mobile. Retrieved May 4, 2015.
  15. ^ a b "Southern League Past Champions". Southern League. Minor League Baseball. Retrieved August 10, 2017.

External links[edit]