Wilmington Blue Rocks

The Wilmington Blue Rocks are a Minor League Baseball team located in Wilmington, Delaware. Beginning in 2021, they will be the Class-A Advanced affiliate of the Washington Nationals.

Wilmington Blue Rocks
Founded in 1993
Wilmington, Delaware
WilmingtonBlueRocks.PNGBluerockscap.PNG
Team logoCap insignia
Minor league affiliations
ClassAdvanced-A
Previous leagues
Carolina League (1993–2020)
Major league affiliations
TeamWashington Nationals (2021–present)
Previous teams
Minor league titles
League titles (5)
  • 1994
  • 1996
  • 1998
  • 1999
  • 2019
Division titles (6)
  • 1993
  • 1995
  • 2001
  • 2004
  • 2015
  • 2019
Team data
NameWilmington Blue Rocks (1993–present)
BallparkDaniel S. Frawley Stadium (1993–present)
Owner(s)/
Operator(s)
Clark Minker, Main Street Baseball
General ManagerVince Bulik[2]
ManagerTommy Shields[1]

Franchise historyEdit

 
Rocky Bluewinkle, mascot of the Wilmington Blue Rocks.

The Blue Rocks played in the Carolina League, an advanced Single-A league in minor league baseball, from 1993 to 2020. The name "Blue Rocks" was chosen because of the blue granite found along the Brandywine River in Wilmington. The Blue Rocks play at Judy Johnson Field at Daniel S. Frawley Stadium in Wilmington's growing Riverfront district and was instrumental in bringing commerce and public attention to the once ignored and dilapidated area of the city.

The Blue Rocks played their first season in 1993 when the Peninsula Pilots were purchased and relocated to the riverfront in Wilmington, Delaware. Principal owner Frank Boulton and co-owner Bud Harrelson bought the franchise in 1992, moved the team from Hampton, Virginia, and changed their affiliation from the Seattle Mariners' farm system to the Kansas City Royals'.[3] When the franchise moved to Wilmington in 1993, the ballpark was known as Legends Stadium, after the sports legends of Delaware. After Frawley, the Wilmington mayor who played a major role in the creation of the team, died while playing a recreational basketball game, the stadium was renamed Daniel S. Frawley Stadium in his honor.

The Blue Rocks have always been a Kansas City farm team, except for the 2005 and 2006 seasons when the team was affiliated with the Boston Red Sox.

In 2005, the Blue Rocks were featured in SportsCenter's 50 States in 50 Days. Matt Winer reported from a set in left field where Sportscenter did stories on the many mascots of the Blue Rocks. The Aug. 19 game featuring SportsCenter drew the Blue Rocks' largest crowd in team history.

The Blue Rocks played host to the 2014 California/Carolina League All Star Game, having previously hosted the game last 12 years earlier in 2002. The California League All Stars ousted the Carolina League All Stars 3-2. Kyle Waldrop of the Bakersfield Blaze took home the game's MVP award.

On July 15, 2019; Jonathan Bowlan pitched the second no-hitter in franchise history against the Carolina Mudcats. He struck out nine batters, walking none on 97 pitches.

The Blue Rocks won the 2019 Mills Cup Championship for the first time since 1999, closing a five-game series with the Fayetteville Woodpeckers with a 2-0 victory on September 14, 2019.

In December 2020, the Blue Rocks were officially invited to become an affiliate of the Washington Nationals, joining the Nationals' minor league system beginning with the 2021 season.[4]

The Blue Rocks have three mascots. One is Rocky Bluewinkle, a blue moose. Another is Mr. Celery, a stalk of celery that comes out to "Song 2" by Blur when Wilmington scores a run, and dances and tosses stalks of celery into the crowd whenever a Blue Rocks player scores a run. Finally, there is Rubble, a giant blue rock.

RosterEdit

 
The Wilmington Blue Rocks' alternate logo
Wilmington Blue Rocks roster
Players Coaches/Other

Pitchers

Catchers

  • -- Allan Berrios
  • -- Geraldi Diaz
  • -- Mason Doolittle

Infielders

Outfielders

  •  9 Gage Canning
  •  7 Justin Connell
  • 13 Jacob Rhinesmith
  •  4 Cody Wilson


Manager

Coaches


  7-day injured list
* On Washington Nationals 40-man roster
# Rehab assignment
∞ Reserve list
‡ Restricted list
§ Suspended list
† Temporary inactive list
Roster updated December 15, 2020
Transactions
More MiLB rosters
Washington Nationals minor league players

PlayoffsEdit

Season Semifinals Finals
1993 W, 2-0, Frederick L, 3-1, Winston-Salem
1994 - W, 3-0, Winston-Salem
1995 W, 2-0, Prince William L, 3-0, Kinston
1996 - W, 3-1, Kinston
1997 - -
1998 - W, 3-1, Winston-Salem
1999 - T, 2-2, Myrtle Beach
2000 - -
2001 W, 2-1, Frederick L, 3-2, Salem
2002 L, 2-1, Lynchburg -
2003 L, 2-0, Lynchburg -
2004 W, 2-1, Potomac L, 3-2, Kinston
2005 - -
2006 L, 2-1, Frederick -
2007 L, 2-0, Frederick -
2008 L, 3-0, Potomac -
2009 L, 3-2, Lynchburg -
2010 - -
2011 - -
2012 L, 2-1, Lynchburg -
2013 - -
2014 - -
2015 W, 2-0 Lynchburg L, 3-0, Myrtle Beach
2016 - -
2017 - -
2018 - -
2019 W, 3-2 Salem W, 3-2, Fayetteville


Players of noteEdit

More than 130 Blue Rocks have gone on to the major leagues, including All-Stars Carlos Beltrán, Lance Carter, Johnny Damon, Zack Greinke, Jon Lieber, Jed Lowrie, José Rosado, and Mike Sweeney. Other former Blue Rock players of note include:

 
Mike Moustakas during his tenure with the Wilmington Blue Rocks in 2009

Retired numbersEdit

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Mears, Steve (December 15, 2020). "Washington Nationals hold ZOOM calls today for the media!". TalkNats. Retrieved December 15, 2020.
  2. ^ "Personnel news: Frisco, Wilmington". Ballpark Digest. January 12, 2021. Retrieved January 12, 2021.
  3. ^ "Delaware Gets Carolina League Team". Roanoke Times. 2009-10-30. p. B9.
  4. ^ "Nationals extend invitations to Minor League affiliates". Curly W Live. December 9, 2020. Retrieved December 9, 2020.
  5. ^ http://m.milb.com/news/article/201005069844624

External linksEdit