Friday Flashback: Pensacola Pelicans

Pensacola_PelicansSeveral years ago, I thought we were going to move to Pensacola, Florida.  We visited the city and loved it but things never worked out to move there.  Pensacola is now home to the Pensacola Blue Wahoos of the Southern League but from 2002-2010, Pensacola’s baseball team were the Pelicans which bounced between three independent leagues during their existence.

They began in the Southeastern League in 2002 and were very successful in their first season.  The Pelicans had the league’s best record (40-28) and won the league championship over the Montgomery Wings.  In 2003, they once again had the league’s best record (42-23) but fell short to the Baton Rouge Riverbats in the championship.  The league folded after the season and the Pelicans joined the Central Baseball league.   In the new league, the Pelicans finished 55-40 and won the East Division.  In 2005, the Pelicans lost in the semifinals to the Fort Worth Cats.

The Central Baseball League folded in 2005 and the Pelicans joined the American Association of Independent Professional Baseball.   Their best season was in 2009 when they won the South Division and lost to the Lincoln Saltdogs in the championship.  The Pelicans finished 49-46 for 5th place in their final season in 2010.

After the season, the Pelicans were sold to a group in Amarillo, Texas so that Pensacola could bring a Double-A team to the city.

The Pelicans played their home games at Jim Spooner Field at Pelican Park.

Pensacola Pelicans History:

  • 2002 – Southeastern League – 40-28 (League Champions)
  • 2003 – Southeastern League – 42-23 (Lost League Finals)
  • 2004 – Central Baseball League – 55-40 (Lost in First Round)
  • 2005 – Central Baseball League – 53-39 (Lost in First Round)
  • 2006 – American Association – 40-56
  • 2007 – American Association – 39-56
  • 2008 – American Association – 43-53
  • 2009 – American Association – 53-43 (Lost League Finals)
  • 2010 – American Association – 49-46 (Lost in First Round)




2016 Minor League Baseball Champions

As we approach October, most of the minor/independent leagues have crowned their champions.  The independent Atlantic League is still in postseason play.  There were five teams winning their first title (El Paso, Bradenton, Great Lakes, Ottawa and Tucson) and two repeat champions (Midland and Myrtle Beach).  

The Scranton-Wilkes Barre RailRiders were crowned AAA champions.  

Minor League Champions

  • International League: Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders
  • Pacific Coast League: El Paso Chihuahuas (first title)
  • AAA National Championship: Scranton-WB RailRiders 3, El Paso Chihuahuas 1
  • Eastern League: Akron RubberDucks (first title since 2012)
  • Southern League:  Jackson (MS) Generals
  • Texas League: Midland Rockhounds (third straight title)
  • California League: High Desert Mavericks (final game in the California League)
  • Carolina League:  Myrtle Beach Pelicans (second straight title)
  • Florida State League:  Bradenton Marauders (first title)
  • Midwest League: Great Lakes Loons (first title)
  • South Atlantic League: Rome Braves 
  • New York-Penn League:  State College (PA) Spikes
  • Northwest League:  Eugene Emeralds (first title since 1975)
  • Appalachain League:  Johnson City (TN) Cardinals (fourth title in seven years)
  • Pioneer League: Orem Owlz (first title since 2009)
  • Arizona League:  Mariners 
  • Gulf Coast League:  Cardinals
  • Mexican League:  Pericos de Puebla

Independent Leagues

  • American Association: Winnipeg Goldeyes 
  • Atlantic League:  Long Island Ducks vs. Sugar Land Skeeters
  • Canadian-American League: Ottawa Champions (first title)
  • Frontier League: Evansville Otters (second title)
  • Pecos League: Tucson Saguaros (first title)

College Leagues

  • Alaska League: Mat-Su Miners
  • Cape Cod League: Yarmouth-Dennis Red Sox
  • Coastal Plain League:  Savannah (GA) Bananas
  • Futures Collegiate Baseball League: Nashua (NH) Silver Knights
  • Great Lakes Summer Collegiate League: Hamilton (OH) Joes
  • New England Collegiate Baseball League: Mystic (CT) Schooners
  • Northwoods League: Wisconsin Rapids (WI) Rafters
  • Perfect Game Collegiate Baseball League: Amsterdam (NY) Mohawks
  • Prospect League: West Virginia Miners
  • Texas Collegiate League: Brazos Valley (TX) Bombers
  • West Coast League: Corvallis (OR) Knights
  • Western Major Baseball League: Swift Current Indians