“A good friend of mine used to say, 'This is a very simple game. You throw the ball, you catch the ball, you hit the ball. Sometimes you win, sometimes you lose, sometimes it rains.' Think about that for a while.”
-Ebby Calvin LaLoosh in the movie Bull Durham
Sacramento, the queen city of California, is home to a thriving professional sports scene. While you may be thinking about our favorite NBA franchise, the win-challenged Sacramento Kings, we have another sports treasure in the region: the River Cats. In fact, catching a ball game at charming Raley Field on a toasty summer night is a Sacramento ritual. And with a major league quality stadium, ticket prices so low you can bring the whole family, and a winning brand of baseball with future major leaguers, you can’t go wrong supporting our ‘Cats.
Here’s a quick snapshot so you’ll enjoy games this summer even more!
Sacramento River Cats
Triple-A Pacific Coast League.
The River Cats play in the Pacific Northern division along with the Reno Aces, Tacoma Rainiers, and Fresno Grizzlies.
The River Cats are now the affiliate of the San Francisco Giants, but prior to 2014, they were the Oakland A’s Triple-A team.
Remarkably, Sacramento's franchise has led all of Minor League Baseball in attendance over the past 14 seasons, making it the most fan-friendly and successful model for minor league baseball. They’ve averaged about 10,000 fans throughout their history. In 2001 they averaged an incredible 12,516 fans per game, a record for Minor League Baseball.
The River Cats have enjoyed unparalleled success on the field, taking home two Triple-A Championships (2007 and 2008) and four Pacific Coast League Championships (back-to-back PCL Championships in 2003 and 2004 and again in 2007 and 2008). The team has also won 11 PCL South Division Championships (2000, 2001, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012).
Players who went on to major league success:
The River Cats have an enviable history of “graduating” players to the major leagues, over 200 at last count, many of whom went on to storied big league careers.
Some notables include:
Barry Zito, 2002 American League Cy Young Award winner
Eric Hinske, 2002 American League Rookie of the Year
Bobby Crosby, 2004 American League Rookie of the Year,
The home of the River Cats was built with private financing in 2000 and is often called the Crown Jewel of Minor League Baseball. The ballpark is located at 400 Ballpark Drive in West Sacramento, California, 95691.
Raley Field is also the home to many community events, festivals, and concerts. The annual Brewfest kicks off Friday, June 12, and the Fourth of July extravaganza and fireworks show is always a hit. You can rent out Raley Field for your own party or business event, or make special arrangements for in-game promotions or visits.
For more information:
Our current River Cats team has roots all the way north in Canada, where the team operated as the Vancouver Canadians in 1978, even winning the Triple-A World Series in 1999.
In 2000, Art Savage bought the franchise and relocated them to West Sacramento, where they built Raley Field with private financing.
But the River Cats wasn’t Sacramento’s version taste of professional baseball; for many years, the Sacramento Solons played in the Pacific Coast League. The Solons operated in 103, 1905, from 1909 through 1914,from 1918 through 1960, and from 1974 through 1976.
The 2015 season will the River Cats 16th in Sacramento.
In 2012, Forbes Magazine listed the River Cats as the most valuable team in Minor League Baseball. The River Cats organization has also been given kudos for their outstanding involvement in local communities.
The Upcoming 2015 season:
The home opener for the 2015 season is on April 9th at 7:05pm, with 144 games on tap. With some sensational young prospects and seasoned baseball veterans in the mix, the team looks to build on its past success and contend for the Triple-A World Series Championship!
Ticket information and prices:
One of the best things about the River Cats is that it’s still affordable enough to bring the whole family and come every week – or every game! Tickets start at only $10 and season tickets offer great discounts. Children under 23 months can attend for free as long as they sit on your lap and don’t take a seat. Parking is convenient and inexpensive, and there are plenty of great concessions in the ballpark so you can enjoy a hot dog and a beer as you watch.
For ticket information visit: http://www.milb.com/tickets/singlegame.jsp?sid=t105