Arkansas Travelers

From BR Bullpen


Team History[edit]

The Arkansas Travelers, formerly of the Texas League and now in Double-A Central, have a brand that goes back to the 1950s and a nickname history that goes even farther as the Little Rock Travelers. The Seattle Mariners farmhands play their home games at Dickey-Stephens Park in North Little Rock, AR.

The current Travs actually came to Little Rock from Tulsa, OK, in a rare franchise swap. The 1966 exchange put Double-A baseball back in Little Rock and Triple-A in Tulsa - albeit the latter was briefly. The Travs have been stable ever since, but the Triple-A franchise that went to Oklahoma moved three more times before finally finding success as the Louisville Redbirds - now Bats - in 1982. As for the Travelers, the longtime Los Angeles Angels' affiliate switched to the Mariners in 2017.

"Travelers" is among the longest-running nicknames in professional sports, dating to 1901. Although it derives from the song title "The Arkansas Traveler", the ballclub went by "Little Rock Travelers" until 1957. The 1961 Minnesota Twins are often incorrectly cited as the first professional sports team to use a state rather than city name as its geographic identifier. That would be correct only for MLB and probably major American professional sports, but the Travelers were first for all pro sports.

The Little Rock Travelers played in the Southern Association, winning championships in 1920, 1937, 1942, and 1951. The Southern Association folded after the 1961 season, taking the Travs with it. In 1963, the city was awarded a new franchise in the Triple-A International League as an affiliate of the Philadelphia Phillies; in 1964, the team moved to the Pacific Coast League. The 1966 franchise swap also brought the St. Louis Cardinals to Little Rock as the Travs' parent club; this relationship lasted until 2000, when the Travs first joined the Angels. The Travs won Texas League championships in 1971, 1977, 1979, 1980, 1989, 2001, and 2005.

Former logo thru 2013

For most of their existence, the Travelers played their home games in the same stadium, called Travelers Field until 1966 when it was renamed Ray Winder Field in honor of longtime Travs' executive Ray Winder.

Some of the most notable names to wear a Travelers uniform include Tris Speaker, Bill Dickey, Jim Bunning, Ferguson Jenkins, Dick Allen, Keith Hernandez, and J.D. Drew.

The Travs play Copa de la Diversión Hispanic engagement campaign games as Diamantes de Arkansas (Arkansas Diamonds).

Year-by-Year Record[edit]

Year Record Finish Manager Playoffs Hitting Coach Pitching Coach Coach
1963 78-73 4th Frank Lucchesi
1964 95-61 1st Frank Lucchesi Lost League Finals
1965 67-79 10th Frank Lucchesi
1966 81-59 1st Vern Rapp Lost in 1st round
1967 63-77 5th Vern Rapp none
1968 82-58 1st Vern Rapp Lost League Finals
1969 66-69 6th Ray Hathaway
1970 67-67 4th Ken Boyer
1971 75-64 3rd Jack Krol League Champs
1972 65-74 6th Fred Koenig
1973 69-71 4th (t) Tom Burgess
1974 75-59 2nd Jack Krol
1975 63-72 5th Roy Majtyka
1976 59-76 7th Jack Krol
1977 63-67 4th Buzzy Keller (20-34) / Tommy Thompson (43-33) League Champs
1978 77-55 2nd Tommy Thompson Lost in 1st round
1979 76-57 1st Tommy Thompson League Champs
1980 81-55 1st Sonny Ruberto League Champs
1981 52-80 8th Gaylen Pitts
1982 68-68 5th (t) Gaylen Pitts (18-30) / Nick Leyva (50-38)
1983 69-67 3rd Nick Leyva Lost in 1st round
1984 62-74 6th Dave Bialas
1985 64-70 5th Jim Riggleman Lost in 1st round
1986 67-67 4th Jim Riggleman Mark Riggins
1987 72-63 4th Jim Riggleman
1988 67-69 5th Jim Riggleman (32-38) / Darold Knowles (0-1) /
Gaylen Pitts (35-30)
Rick Colbert
1989 79-56 1st Gaylen Pitts League Champs Chris Maloney
1990 56-80 7th (t) Dave Bialas Marty Mason
1991 49-87 8th Joe Pettini Scott Melvin Marty Mason
1992 59-73 8th Joe Pettini Marty Mason
1993 67-69 5th Joe Pettini Marty Mason
1994 68-67 4th Chris Maloney Marty Mason
1995 70-65 3rd Mike Ramsey Marty Mason
1996 67-73 7th Rick Mahler Jeff Shireman Marty Mason
1997 68-72 4th Rick Mahler Rich Folkers
1998 80-60 1st Chris Maloney Lost in 1st round Luis Meléndez Rich Folkers
1999 59-81 8th Chris Maloney Glenn Brummer Rich Folkers
2000 68-71 5th Chris Maloney Brian Rupp Dave LaPoint
2001 66-70 6th Mike Brumley League Champs Mark Budaska Mike Butcher
2002 51-89 8th Doug Sisson Tyrone Boykin Randy Kramer
2003 70-70 5th Tyrone Boykin Keith Comstock
2004 59-80 7th Tyrone Boykin Todd Takayoshi Kernan Ronan
2005 71-69 4th Tom Gamboa Lost League Finals Todd Takayoshi Keith Comstock
2006 51-87 8th Tyrone Boykin Keith Johnson Ken Patterson
2007 65-75 7th Bobby Magallanes Keith Johnson Erik Bennett
2008 62-78 6th Bobby Magallanes League Champs Eric Owens Ken Patterson
2009 61-79 7th (t) Bobby Magallanes Francisco Matos Ken Patterson
2010 55-85 8th Bobby Magallanes Francisco Matos Ken Patterson
2011 68-69 4th Bill Mosiello (39-31) / Todd Takayoshi (13-20) /
Bobby Mitchell (16-18)
Lost League Finals Francisco Matos
2012 62-78 6th Mike Micucci Francisco Matos / Nathan Haynes Trevor Wilson
2013 73-66 3rd Tim Bogar Lost League Finals Mike Hampton
2014 75-65 3rd Phillip Wellman Lost in 1st round Tom Tornincasa Pat Rice
2015 71-68 3rd Bill Richardson Lost in 1st round Tom Tornincasa Pat Rice
2016 67-73 5th Mark Parent Brent Del Chiaro Scott Budner
2017 65-75 7th Daren Brown Roy Howell Ethan Katz Eddie Menchaca
2018 71-68 4th Daren Brown Lost in 1st round Roy Howell Ethan Katz Jimmy Van Ostrand
2019 81-57 1st Mitch Canham (42-21) / Wilson & Woodworth (0-3) / Cesar Nicolas (39-33) Lost in 1st round Kyle Wilson Peter Woodworth
2020 Season cancelled
2021 Collin Cowgill Joe Thurston Alon Leichman Ryan McLaughlin

External Links[edit]