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Edmonton Cracker-Cats

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Title: Edmonton Cracker-Cats  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
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Subject: Todd Betts, Mike Johnson (1990s pitcher), Mike Kusiewicz, Golden Baseball League, Edmonton Capitals, Terry Bevington, Orlando Miller, Al Coates (broadcaster), Edmonton Prospects, Sport in Edmonton
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

Edmonton Cracker-Cats

Edmonton Capitals
Founded in 2005
Edmonton, Alberta
Team logo
Cap insignia
League affiliations
  • Edmonton Capitals (2009–present)
  • Edmonton Cracker Cats (2005–2008)
Team Colours
  • Navy Blue, Orange, Silver, White
  • League titles: 2011
  • Division titles: 2011
Owner(s)/Operated By: Katz Baseball Corp.
General Manager: Patrick LaForge (Governor)
Manager: Gordon Gerlach
Media: CFRN Radio
Edmonton Sun
Edmonton Journal

The Edmonton Capitals are a professional baseball team based in Edmonton, Alberta. Known originally as the Edmonton Cracker-Cats, they began play in the Northern League in 2005 before switching to the Golden Baseball League in 2008. The team was sold to Daryl Katz in 2009, after which the team was renamed. The Capitals are not affiliated with Major League Baseball.

The team last played in 2011. Since then, the owners have been seeking a new league to play in.

Team history

Northern League (2005–2007)

The Cracker-Cats began as an expansion team in 2005 as a member of the Northern League. The name "Cracker-Cats" is derived from the oil industry term fluid catalytic cracking ("cat cracking" for short), which is part of the process of refining crude oil into gasoline by converting high boiling hydrocarbons into smaller molecules. They played the first game of their inaugural season on May 20, 2005, on the road against the Kansas City T-Bones. Their first home game did not take place until one week later when they hosted the Sioux Falls Canaries in front of 7,894 fans.[1]

On June 13, 2006, a string of bean balls in the first two innings touched off two major brawls between the Cracker-Cats and their provincial rivals, the Calgary Vipers. After Edmonton's Greg Morrison was hit by a Calgary pitch for the fourth time in five games, the Cracker-Cats responded by throwing at two Calgary players. The resulting melee was so violent that the umpires sent both teams off the field, and suspended the game for over an hour to consult with league officials. When the Cracker-Cats refused to return to the field afterward, the game was declared a forfeit and the Vipers were awarded a 9–0 victory even though Edmonton was leading 1–0. As a result of the suspension, Cracker-Cats manager Terry Bevington resigned.[2] The league came down hard on both teams, as both managers and seven players were suspended a total of 79 games. Morrison blamed Calgary manager Mike Busch for the incident, believing that Busch held a grudge after both Morrison and another former Viper, J.P. Fauske defected to the Cracker-Cats after leaving the Vipers after a falling out with the Calgary manager late in the 2005 season.[3]

On July 18, 2006, Stubby Clapp was named Most Valuable Player of the Northern League All-Star Game. On September 3, 2006, the 'Cats finished their second season six games back in the wild card race and missed the playoffs.

The 2007 season was a major disappointment. Al Coates, a sports broadcaster, was named general manager of the Edmonton Cracker-Cats for the 2007 season,[4] and despite adding three former Major Leaguers, Ryan Radmanovich, Mike Johnson, and Lou Pote, the 'Cats finished 38–58 and last in the league.

Golden Baseball League (2008–2010)

After three years in the Northern League, the Cracker-Cats joined the Golden Baseball League on October 24, 2007. This occurred just after the rival Vipers jumped to the league. On June 30, 2008, The 'Cats set a new attendance record of 8,676 fans against the Vipers.[5]

On August 22, 2008, the Cracker-Cats clinched a playoff spot by defeating the Orange County Flyers 13–4 and won the second half. They faced the Vipers, who won the first half, in the first-ever North Division Championship Series, but were swept by Calgary 3 games to 0.

On February 4, 2009, the Cracker-Cats were purchased for $400,000 by Katz Baseball Corp. led by Daryl Katz who also owns the National Hockey League's Edmonton Oilers.[6] A new name was drawn from a contest, renaming the franchise the Capitals.

North American League (2011)

The Capitals were one of six former GBL teams to join the newly formed North American League in 2010 and began play in 2011. The Capitals won the league championship in the inaugural season of the NAL. On February 21, 2012 the Katz group announced that the Edmonton Capitals have withdrawn from the North American League, citing that only four teams had registered for the 2012 season.[7] They also went dark for the 2013 season after being unable to find a new league to plan in. They are exploring options for the 2014 baseball season.[8]

Year-by-year record

            First Half   Second Half   Overall      
Season League Division W-L Finish W-L Finish W-L Win% Playoffs
2005[9] NL North 22–26 5th 25–22 3rd 47–48 .495 Did not qualify
2006[10] NL North 21–27 3rd 23–25 T-3 44–52 .458 Did not qualify
2007[11] NL North 19–29 4th 19–29 4th 37–58 .389 Did not qualify
2008 GBL North 22–21 2nd 29–15 1st 51–36 .586 Lost North Division playoff 0–3 to Calgary
2009 GBL North 23–18 2nd 21-20 2nd 44-38 .537 Lost North Division playoff 1–3 to Calgary.
2010 GBL North 29–16 2nd 22-22 4th 51-38 .573 Did not qualify
2011[12] NAL North 56-32 1st N/A N/A 56-32 .636 Won Championship 4-1 over Rio Grande Valley

See also


External links

  • Official Website
  • Golden Baseball League

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