Sunday, March 25, 2012

K-Tribe Strikes Out Looking

Every sports fan understands the unfortunate possibility of their team  possibly being moved to a distant city, or even being disbanded forever. Often times the mental and emotional trauma never reaches the front line, but other times it is an unavoidable blinding light in your face.

This past September, reality set in for the Kinston Indians, formerly of the Carolina League of Minor League Baseball. As they fell to the Frederick Keys in the Mills Cup Championship Series on a somber Friday night. The season was now over, along with the teams tenure in the South-East North Carolina city.

The Indians had been a part of the Kinston community since the 1987 season. The 25 seasons of baseball that were played in the area undoubtedly provided endless hours of entertainment, family fun, and ninth inning rallies.  In that quarter century of bloopers and bombs there were championship seasons and notable alumni worth acknowledging along the way.

In the K-Tribes time in the Carolina League, the club had recorded 10 division titles and 5 league titles. Throughout those championship seasons, a few players that have buttoned up the Indians jersey have hit pay dirt in "The Show". Some of those men are: Jim Thome, of Cleveland Indian and Philadelphia Phillies fame, Ron Guidry of the New York Yankees, and Manny Ramirez of The Cleveland Indian and The Boston Red Sox. Throughout their entire history, the club has been the High-A affiliate of (you guessed it) The Cleveland Indians.

The club played all of their home games at  historic Grainger Stadium, which holds 4,100 fans. Grainger Stadium has been a part of Kinston baseball for over 62 years. Despite the departing of the Indians, the community has hope that the park will play host to a club in the future that will play in the Coastal Plain League; a wood bat college level summer league.

However, with death comes life to some extent in this scenario. As the last out has been recorded in Kinston Indians history, the resurrection of another historic club becomes official for the 2012 season. The Carolina Mudcats are making a return to professional baseball, after a brief hiatus during this past off-season. The new Mudcats will replace the spot voided by the Indians in the High-A level of the Carolina League.

The fitted above is a fashion-adapted version of the Indians on-field cap, which was worn over the last few seasons of their existence. It has a dark blue brim, and a black crown. The alternate logo is located front and center with white and dark blue feathers.

Minor league baseball is quirky in the field of franchises dying and then rising from the dead to play again, somewhere down the road. Don't be surprised of they make a return in the future.

Fitteds with the teams logos, either on field models or merely replicas, can be found HERE

I hope you enjoyed today's post, and even learned a thing or two.

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