|Team name:||Princeton Pirates (1988-89)
Princeton Patriots (1990)
Princeton Reds (1991-96)
Princeton Devil Rays (1997-2008)
Princeton Rays (2009-Pres.)
Tampa Bay (1997-Pres.)
|Location:||Princeton, WV (1988-Pres.)|
|Ballpark:||Hunnicutt Field (1997-Pres.)|
|First organizational game|
|June 18, 1997 vs. Bluefield|
With backing from Allen Coppinger (a supporter of the Bluefield team that resides in the same county) and then-Appalachian League President Bill Halstead, Princeton sent a small delegation to the Winter Meetings being held in Dallas, TX in 1987. Officials from the Pittsburgh Pirates visited the following month, and quickly announced intentions to field a team in the town.
Given only 5 months to prepare, the community managed to be ready for the beginning of the 1988 season, including building a new ballpark, Hunnicutt Field. Princeton began play in the Advanced-Rookie Appalachian League in 1988 as an affiliate of the Pirates, named after the parent club. The relationship with Pittsburgh lasted for only two seasons.
In 1991, Princeton regained full affiliation, this time with the Cincinnati Reds, and took the named of the new parent club. Later that year, then-team president Hames Thompson hired the franchise's first full-time employee, Jim Holland, to be the General Manager. Holland has presided in that position since then.
Affiliation with Tampa Bay
- "Franchise History of Pro Baseball in Princeton". princetondevilrays.com. Princeton Devil Rays. Archived from the original on December 7, 2004. http://replay.web.archive.org/20041207155910/http://www.princetondevilrays.com/history.html. Retrieved May 17, 2011.
- Topkin, Marc (September 27, 1996). "Rays add rookie team in Princeton, W.Va.". St. Petersburg Times: p. 4C.
- Princeton Devil Rays on Baseball-Reference Bullpen
- Princeton Rays on Baseball-Reference Bullpen
- Princeton Rays on Wikipedia
- Princeton Devil Rays on SABR Encyclopedia
- Princeton Rays on SABR Encyclopedia
- Princeton Rays Official Site