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Pawtucket Red Sox

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In baseball, the Pawtucket Red Sox (known colloquially as the PawSox) are the AAA affiliate of the Boston Red Sox and belong to the International League. They play their home games at McCoy Stadium in Pawtucket, Rhode Island.

History of the PawSoxEdit

The first team to be dubbed the Pawtucket Red Sox debuted at McCoy Stadium in 1970 as a member of the Double-A Eastern League. After three seasons as a AA Boston affiliate, this franchise moved to Bristol, Connecticut in 1973 to make room for the AAA PawSox.

The team that is now the Pawtucket Red Sox was long ago the International League franchise Toronto Maple Leafs. After the American Association and its Louisville Colonels franchise folded in 1962 and the American League owners voted down Charlie Finley's agreement to move the Kansas City A's to Louisville in 1964, Louisville was ready for the return of baseball. In 1968 the Maple Leafs, the Red Sox' top minor league club since 1965, were bought by Walter J. Dilbeck and moved to Louisville where they became the new Louisville Colonels, the AAA franchise of the Boston Red Sox. While in Louisville, star players included Carlton Fisk (1971), Dwight Evans (1972) and Cecil Cooper (1972). The Louisville Colonels made the International League playoffs in 1969 and 1972. However, in 1972 the Kentucky State Fair Board, which operated the stadium where the Colonels played, decided to convert the facility to primary use for football.

Following the 1972 season the Louisville Colonels moved to Pawtucket and became the Pawtucket Red Sox. The team was an instant success on the field, led by future major leaguers Cecil Cooper and Dick Pole, winning the 1973 Governors' Cup Championship in their inaugural year in the league over the Charleston Charlies. The following season the team finished 30 games below .500 and in 1975, while the parent club was on their way to the World Series, the PawSox finished with a miserable 53-87. Following another sub-.500 season in 1976 the franchise went bankrupt, unable to pay off $2 million worth of debt.

Although it appeared the Red Sox's brief flirtation with the Pawtucket area was about to come to an end, retired businessman Ben Mondor stepped in and made sure the team would remain entrenched in the city. What Mondor wanted, and got, was a new franchise; although to outsiders it would appear as if nothing had changed since the team name remained the same. So it was really in 1977 that the current Pawtucket Red Sox, and PawSox, were born. To his credit, Mondor has turned Pawtucket into a viable baseball market, where so many others had failed before. In his 25 years at the helm of the PawSox, Mondor has seen the average attendance for Pawtucket games go from barely 1,000 fans per game in 1977 to nearly 9,000 in 2000. Mondor has been part of the management that has overseen the transformation of McCoy Stadium from an aging 1942 relic into its currently renovated form. And while keeping the price of tickets at $6 and $9, parking has always been free. The PawSox usually lead the league in attendance, and in 2005 set a franchise record with 688,421 tickets sold during the year.

In addition to their success at the box office, the PawSox have excelled in the field. In 2000, Pawtucket set an all-time franchise record for victories with 82, as the team completed their 5th straight winning season. Pawtucket has fielded winning teams in 10 of the last 17 years, including the 1984 team that defeated the now-defunct Maine Guides 3-2 to win the 1984 Governors' Cup trophy for the second championship in Pawtucket Red Sox history.

As for the name PawSox, the origins are traced back to the first season in which Mondor owned the club. Three weeks before the 1977 season began the team lacked uniforms, despite having been rescued from bankruptcy. Former Boston GM Haywood Sullivan stepped in and sent Pawtucket 48 sets of old home and away uniforms from the parent club. Although the home uniforms were fine for the team to use, the road uniforms had "Boston" stitched across the chest, which was a problem. Then Pawtucket GM Mike Tamburro, who is currently the organization's President, suggested using the moniker "PawSox" across the front, with each unstitched "Boston" letter replaced with one that spelled "PawSox." Thus, the PawSox name was born out of the necessity of a uniform crisis, not a clever focus group-based marketing campaign.

As a man who made a career of buying and selling bankrupt business, Mondor has turned around the fortunes of Pawtucket baseball, instituting an affordable and friendly atmosphere, and giving Pawtucket a baseball tradition in line with what one would expect from an affiliate of the storied Boston Red Sox.

"The Longest Game"Edit

The PawSox played in and won the longest game in professional baseball history, a 33 inning game against the Rochester Red Wings at McCoy Stadium. The game started on April 18, 1981. Play was suspended at 4:07AM at the end of the 32nd inning. The game did not resume again until June 23 when the Red Wings returned to Pawtucket. Only one inning was needed, with the PawSox winning 3-2 in the bottom of the 33rd. Future Major League Baseball stars Cal Ripken Jr. and Wade Boggs played in the game.

On June 23, 2006, the PawSox will celebrate the 25th anniversary of "The Longest Game" with events and festivities when they play the Columbus Clippers.

Perfect GamesEdit

  • Tomokazu Ohka pitched a nine-inning perfect game for the Pawtucket Red Sox on June 1, 2000. Ohka retired all 27 batters he faced in a 2-0 win over the Charlotte Knights, and he needed just 76 pitches to toss the first nine-inning perfect game in the International League since 1952.
  • On August 10, 2003, Bronson Arroyo pitched the fourth nine-inning perfect game in the 121-year history of the International League as the PawSox beat the Buffalo Bisons 7–0 at McCoy Stadium. He needed 101 pitches to throw his masterpiece (73 strikes), struck out nine, and got 10 fly outs and eight ground balls from the Buffalo 27 batters. He went to a three-ball count to just three hitters all game. At the end of the month, he was with the big league club until the Winter Break between the 2005 and 2006 seasons when the Red Sox trade him to the Cincinnati Reds.

TitlesEdit

The PawSox have won the Governors' Cup, the championship of the IL, 2 times, and played in the championship series 6 times.

Yearly ResultsEdit

Year W L .PCT Finish GA/GB Manager
1973 78 68 .534 2nd International League -1 Darrell Johnson
1974 57 87 .396 4th International League -31 Joe Morgan
1975 53 87 .379 8th International League -32.5 Joe Morgan
1976 68 70 .493 5th International League -20 Joe Morgan
1977 80 60 .571 1st International League +2 Joe Morgan
1978 81 59 .579 2nd International League -4 Joe Morgan
1979 66 74 .471 5th International League -19.5 Joe Morgan
1980 62 77 .446 7th International League -20.5 Joe Morgan
1981 67 73 .479 6th International League -21.5 Joe Morgan
1982 67 71 .489 5th International League -14.5 Joe Morgan
1983 56 83 .403 8th International League -26.5 Tony Torchia
1984 75 65 .536 4th International League -7.5 Tony Torchia
1985 48 91 .345 8th International League -30.5 Rac Slider
1986 74 65 .532 3rd International League -5.5 Ed Nottle
1987 73 67 .521 4th International League -8 Ed Nottle
1988 63 79 .444 6th International League -14.5 Ed Nottle
1989 62 84 .425 8th International League -21.5 Ed Nottle
1990 62 84 .425 7th International League -27.5 Ed Nottle (through 6/26)

Johnny Pesky (from 6/27)

1991 79 64 .552 1st International League +3.5 Butch Hobson
1992 71 72 .497 2nd International League -13.5 Rico Petrocelli
1993 60 82 .423 4th International League -14.5 Buddy Bailey
1994 78 64 .549 1st International League +7 Buddy Bailey
1995 70 71 .492 3rd International League -2.5 Buddy Bailey
1996 78 64 .549 1st International League +5.5 Buddy Bailey
1997 81 60 .574 2nd International League -2 Ken Macha
1998 77 64 .546 3rd International League -3 Ken Macha
1999 76 68 .528 2nd International League -2 Gary Jones
2000 82 61 .573 3rd International League -3 Gary Jones
2001 60 82 .423 5th International League -31 Gary Jones
2002 60 84 .417 5th International League -31 Buddy Bailey
2003 83 61 .576 1st International League +4 Buddy Bailey
2004 73 71 .507 2nd International League -10 Buddy Bailey
2005 75 69 .521 2nd International League -7 Ron Johnson
Totals 2295 2381 .491

Playoff HistoryEdit

Year W L Result Round W L Result Round
1977 3 1 Beat Richmond 1st round of playoffs 0 4 Lost to Charleston Governors' Cup championship
1978 3 2 Beat Toledo 1st round of playoffs 3 4 Lost to Richmond Governors' Cup championship
1984 3 1 Beat Columbus 1st round of playoffs 3 2 Beat Maine Governors' Cup championship
1986 1 3 Lost to Rochester 1st round of playoffs - - - -
1987 1 3 Lost to Tidewater 1st round of playoffs - - - -
1991 0 3 Lost to Columbus Governors' Cup championship - - - -
1992 1 3 Lost to Scranton IL East championship - - - -
1994 1 3 Lost to Syracuse IL East championship - - - -
1996 1 3 Lost to Rochester IL East championship - - - -
1997 1 3 Lost to Rochester IL East championship - - - -
2003 3 2 Beat Ottawa 1st round of playoffs 0 3 Lost to Durham Governors' Cup championship
Totals 24 40 - - - - - -

Template:MLB Team Boston Red Sox

International League
North Division South Division West Division
Buffalo Bisons | Ottawa Lynx | Pawtucket Red Sox | Rochester Red Wings | Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Yankees | Syracuse Chiefs Charlotte Knights | Durham Bulls | Norfolk Tides | Richmond Braves Columbus Clippers | Indianapolis Indians | Louisville Bats | Toledo Mud Hens

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