Peninsula Pilots (minor league team)
|Minor league affiliations|
|Major league affiliations|
|Minor league titles|
|League titles||4 1971, 1977, 1980, 1992|
The franchise had many monikers, playing as the Peninsula Senators (1963), Peninsula Grays (1964-1968), Peninsula Astros (1969), Peninsula Phillies (1970–71), Peninsula Whips (1972-1973), Peninsula Pennants (1974), Peninsula Pilots (1976-1985), Peninsula White Sox (1986-1987), Virginia Generals (1988) and Peninsula Pilots (1976-1985, 1989-1992). The teams were members of the Class A Carolina League (1963-1971), Class AAA International League (1972-1973) and Class A Carolina League (1974-1992).
Peninsula teams were an affiliate of the Washington Senators (1963), Cincinnati Reds (1964-1966), Kansas City Athletics (1967), Oakland Athletics (1968), Houston Astros (1969), Philadelphia Phillies (1970-1971), Montreal Expos (1972-1973), Philadelphia Phillies (1976-1985), Chicago White Sox (1986-1987) and Seattle Mariners (1990-1992).
The 1980 team was named the 74th best Minor League team of the 20th century in a list by two noted minor league historians, Bill Weiss and Marshall Wright. The team was known as the Peninsula Senators (1963), Grays (1964-1968), Astros (1969), Phillies (1970–71), Whips (1972-1973), Pennants (1974) and White Sox in 1986–1987 while affiliated with the Chicago White Sox, and as the Virginia Generals in 1988 when they operated as an unaffiliated co-op club. They regained their original name in 1989 and major league affiliation returned in 1990 with the Seattle Mariners (1990–1992). The team's existence ended after the 1992 season when they relocated to Wilmington, Delaware and became the Wilmington Blue Rocks.
Peninsula teams played at War Memorial Stadium (1963-1992). Built in 1948, the ballpark is still in use today and is located at 1889 West Pembroke Avenue, Hampton, Virginia, 23661. Today, War Memorial Stadium is home to the summer collegiate baseball team with the same Peninsula Pilots moniker who play in the Coastal Plain League.
War Memorial Stadium was first built by Branch Rickey for the Newport News Dodgers, who played at War Memorial from 1948-1958 as members of the Piedmont League. The ballpark has also been known as Peninsula Stadium.
Notable Peninsula AlumniEdit
Baseball Hall of Fame alumniEdit
- Johnny Bench (1966) Inducted, 1989
- Gary Carter (1973) Inducted, 2003
- Satchel Paige (1966) Inducted, 1971
Notable Peninsula alumniEdit
- Bret Boone (1990) 3x MLB All-Star;
- Bernie Carbo (1966)
- Cesar Cedeno (1969) 4x MLB All-Star
- Darren Daulton (1982) 3x MLB All-Star; Philadelphia Phillies Wall of Fame
- Bob Dernier (1979)
- Jim Essian (1971)
- Darrell Evans (1967) 2x MLB All-Star; 1985 AL Home Run Leader; San Francisco Giants Wall of Fame
- Ken Forsch (1969) 2x MLB All-Star
- Julio Franco (1980) 3x MLB All-Star; 1991 AL Batting Title
- Craig Grebeck (1987)
- Cliff Johnson (1969)
- Mike LaValliere (1982)
- Skip Lockwood (1968)
- Hal McRae (1966) 3x MLB All-Star; Kansas City Royals Hall of Fame
- Mike Maddux (1983)
- Steve Mingori (1965-1966)
- Jeff Nelson (1990) MLB All-Star
- Scott Radinsky (1987)
- Steve Rogers (1972) 5x MLB All-Star; 1977 NL ERA Leader
- Juan Samuel (1982) 3x MLB All-Star
- Gene Tenace (1967) MLB All-Star
- Andre Thornton (1970) 2x MLB All-Star; Roberto Clemente Award (1979); Cleveland Indians Hall of Fame
- Bob Walk (1977) MLB All-Star
|1977||71-67||2nd||Jim Snyder||League Champs|
|1978||90-49||1st||Jim Snyder||Lost League Finals|
|1980||100-40||1st||Bill Dancy||League Champs|
|1981||71-65||1st||Bill Dancy||Lost League Finals|
|1982||90-47||1st||Bill Dancy||Lost in 1st round|
|1984||73-67||3rd||Ron Clark||Lost in 1st round|
|1986||60-74||5th||Bob Bailey / Duke Sims|
|1987||66-74||5th (tie)||Marv Foley|
|1992||74-64||2nd||Marc Hill||League Champs|
- "Newport News, Virginia sports teams on StatsCrew.com". www.statscrew.com.
- Bill Weiss; Marshall Wright (2001). "Top 100 Teams". Minor League Baseball.
- Viquez, Marc. "War Memorial Stadium – Peninsula Pilots | Stadium Journey".
- "War Memorial Stadium in Hampton, VA history and teams on StatsCrew.com". www.statscrew.com.