MLB Teams

Twelve Minor League Baseball Teams In Florida

By / 5 October 2023 10:30 AM

The sunshine state is home to several minor league teams who are affiliated with the MLB teams
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There are twelve minor league baseball teams in Florida. Daytona Tortugas and Jupiter Hammerheads are among the Single-A affiliate teams in the state.

Minor league baseball (MILB) is a league that is a tier below major league baseball. There are several different classifications and divisions.

The major league teams have up to four affiliate teams across the minor leagues. These teams help to grow and develop talent once the MLB team signs or drafts a young player.

Hence, there are different levels of minor league baseball. A player has to be promoted from one affiliate to another one in the upper-category league before he finally gets his shot in the major league.

However, this is not to say that every minor league team has an affiliation with the bigger teams in the majors. There are many minor league teams that are independent and do not have any sort of affiliations with the teams in the big league.

The minor leagues are categorized into five divisions. There are the Triple-A leagues, the Double-A leagues, High-A leagues, Single-A leagues, and finally, the Rookie leagues.

Florida Based Teams In The Triple A

The Triple-A leagues are the highest level of leagues in all of minor league baseball. The Triple-A consists of the International League and the Pacific Coast League.

The international league has 20 teams participating in it whereas the Pacific league consists of 10 teams. One Florida-based team competes in one of these leagues, with it being the Jacksonville Jumbo Shrimp in the International League.

Established in 1962 as the Jacksonville Suns, the team has had a rich history of being affiliated with several MLB teams over its existence period. Its current MLB affiliate, the Miami Marlins, is the team's 12th affiliation with a team from the major league, the Cleveland Indians being the first.

Jumbo Shrimp are the only Florida based team in the Triple-A
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Here are some interesting quick facts on the Jacksonville Jumbo Shrimp:

  • Established: 1962
  • MLB Affiliation: Miami Marlins
  • Based: Jacksonville, Florida
  • Ballpark: 121 Financial Ballpark
  • Team Colors: Navy, blue, red, shrimp
  • Other League competed: Triple-A East, Southern League
  • League title: 14
  • Division Title: 7

The team has had four name changes in its entire history. The Shrimps have a win percentage of .511 in the regular season game, while their post-season percentage improves by a bit to .532.

Pensacola Blue Wahoos Represents Florida In Double A

Pensacola Blue Wahoos are the only team in one of the Double-A leagues in the MILB.

Double-A is just below Triple-A regarding quality and level of play. There are three different leagues within the Double-A league system, with them being the Eastern League, Southern League, and Texas League.

Representing Florida, the Pensacola Blue Wahoos compete in the Double-A Southern League. Established in 2012 as the minor league affiliate of the Cincinnati Reds, the organization has sided with the Miami Marlins since 2021.

Established in 2012, Blue Wahoos have two league titles to their name
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The team also was affiliated with the Minnesota Twins for some time in between. It is fairly a new team compared to others in this league, here are some facts about the team hailing from the city of Five Flags:

  • Established: 2012
  • MLB Affiliations: Miami Marlins
  • Based: Pensacola, Florida
  • Ballpark: Admiral Fetterman Field
  • Team Colors: Gulf Coast royal blue, Blue Angel navy, coral pink, tin roof tin
  • Other leagues competed: Double-A South
  • League title: 2
  • Division title: 2

The Wahoos have a winning percentage of .497 in the regular season, while their postseason win percentage is just at .368 at the time of writing this article.

Florida Has 10 Teams In the Single A

With no team in the High-A minor league division, Florida has its own league and based teams in the Single-A division.

Single-A leagues fall under the High-A leagues in terms of the level of play and how people view them. It consists of three different leagues which include the Carolina League, the Florida State League, and the California League.

Florida State League has a collection of ten teams, which are divided into east divisions with four representatives and the west having six.

Here are the ten teams that compete in the Florida State League in the MILB. To begin with, these are the four East Division teams:

Daytona Tortugas

  • Established: 1993 as Daytona Cubs
  • MLB Affiliation: Cincinnati Reds
  • Previous affiliation: Chicago Cubs
  • Based: Daytona Beach, Florida
  • Ballpark: Jackie Robinson Ballpark
  • Other leagues competed: Low-A Southeast
  • League title: 6
  • Division title: 9

Daytona Tortugas are affiliated to the Cincinnati Reds
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Although Jackie Robinson Ballpark has been their home since the beginning, they played their home matches in Melching Field at Conrad Park in the 2004 season because their ballpark was damaged by Hurricane Charley. 

Jupiter Hammerheads

The Jupiter Hammerheads play at the Roger Dean Chevrolet Stadium
Source : 1000logos

  • Established: 1998
  • MLB Affiliation: Miami Marlins
  • Previous affiliation: Montreal Expos
  • Based: Jupiter, Florida
  • Ballpark: Roger Dean Chevrolet Stadium
  • Other leagues competed: Low-A Southeast
  • League title: N/A
  • Division title: 1

Hammerheads are the only team in the Flordia State League with no league title to their name.

Palm Beach Cardinals

  • Established: 2003
  • MLB Affiliation: St. Louis Cardinals
  • Based: Jupiter, Florida
  • Ballpark: Roger Dean Chevrolet Stadium
  • Other leagues competed: Low-A Southeast
  • League title: 2
  • Division title: 2

Palm Beach Cardinals are based in Jupiter, Florida
Source : 1000logos

Palm Beach Cardinals were in the Class A-Advanced class, also known as the High-A from 2003 to 2020, before dropping down a notch to the Single-A and not having any team from Florida in the High-A.

St. Lucie Mets

St. Lucie Mets have been in affiliation with the New York Mets for the last 35 years
Source : milb

  • Established: 1988
  • MLB Affiliation: New York Mets
  • Based: Port St. Lucie, Florida
  • Ballpark: Clover Park
  • Other leagues competed: Low-A Southeast
  • League title: 6
  • Division title: 8

St. Lucie Mets haven't had affiliations with any other MLB team since their inception apart from the New York Mets, with whom they've had a successful 35-year partnership winning 6 titles in the process.

Looking at the west division of the Florida State League, we have six other teams contesting in the league. Here are the remaining six MILB teams that round up the Single-A division teams from the Sunshine State:

Bradenton Marauders

  • Established: 2010
  • MLB Affiliation: Pittsburgh Pirates
  • Based: Bradenton, Florida
  • Ballpark: LECOM Park
  • Team Colors: Black, gold, white
  • Other leagues competed: Low-A Southeast
  • League titles: 2
  • Division titles: 1

Bradenton Marauders are the youngest team in the FSL
Source : 1000logos

Bradenton Marauders are the youngest team in the Florida State League, having been founded in 2010. The pirate-themed team played its first-ever game on April 8, 2010.

Clearwater Threshers

  • Established: 1985 as Clearwater Phillies
  • MLB Affiliation: Philadelphia Phillies
  • Based: Clearwater, Florida
  • Ballpark: BayCare Ballpark
  • Other leagues competed: Low-A Southeast
  • League title: 2
  • Division title: 3

Clearwater Threshers have two league titles to their name
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Clearwater Phillies changed their name to the Clearwater Threshers in 2004. They have won one title each before and after their name change took place.

Dunedin Blue Jays

  • Established: 1978
  • MLB Affiliation: Toronto Blue Jays
  • Based: Dunedin, Florida
  • Ballpark: TD Ballpark
  • Other leagues competed: Low-A Southeast
  • League title: 1
  • Division title: 6

Dunedin Blue Jays was established in 1978 as part of the Blue Jays farm system
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Dunedin Blue Jays were established a year after their major league-affiliated counterpart in 1978 as one of their farm system teams in the minor league. The team was disbanded for some years but made a comeback in the 1987 season.

Fort Myers Mighty Mussels

  • Established: 1926 as Fort Myers Palms
  • MLB Affiliation: Minnesota Twins
  • Previous affiliations: San Diego Padres, Baltimore Orioles, Philadelphia Phillies
  • Based: Fort Myers, Florida
  • Ballpark: Hammond Stadium
  • Team Colors: Navy, purple, golden sun, sand, sky blue, white
  • Other leagues competed: Low-A Southeast
  • League title: 7
  • Division title: 4

Established in the 20s, Fort Myers Mighty Mussels have 7 league titles
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Fort Myers Mighty Mussels are one of the oldest MILB teams out there. During their 97-year-long history, they have had seven separate name changes and have played their home games in six different ballparks including their present one.

Lakeland Flying Tigers

  • Established: 1960 as Lakeland Indians
  • MLB Affiliation: Detroit Tigers
  • Previous affiliation: San Francisco Giants, Cleveland Indians
  • Based: Lakeland, Florida
  • Ballpark: Publix Field at Joker Marchant Stadium
  • Other leagues competed: Low-A Southeast
  • League title: 4
  • Division title: N/A

Lakeland tigers are part of the Detroit Tigers farm system
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The Lakeland Flying Tigers have had three name changes in their entire history. They decided to go with their current name in 2007.

Tampa Tarpons

  • Established: 1994 as Tampa Yankees
  • MLB Affiliation: New York Yankees
  • Based: Tampa, Florida
  • Ballpark: George M. Steinbrenner Field
  • Team Colors: Legends navy, Tarpon silver, Gulf blue, white
  • Other leagues competed: Low-A Southeast
  • League title: 5
  • Division title: 7

Tampa Tarpons are the MILP affiliates of the New York Yankees
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Finally, we've had the Tampa Tarpons, who haven't had many changes or tweaks since their inception in the early 90s. Tarpons are one of the most successful MiLB teams within their division with 5 league titles.

Rookie Level Florida League Has 16 Teams

The rookie-level Florida complex league has 16 teams in it with all of them having an affiliation with an MLB team.

The rookie-level leagues are the lowest-ranked when it comes to the quality and level of play. The US-based rookie leagues are made up of two leagues, the Arizona Complex League, and the Florida Complex League (FCL).

Flordia Complex League consists of 16 teams
Source : milb

The name complex league came to be because the league matches for the rookie leagues are played in the spring training complexes of the major league affiliated teams of the respective participating teams. Hence, the name complex.

Likewise, the teams have no restrictions in terms of squad size as they can have as many players under the set guidelines and policies of the league. Rookie leagues were created with the sole purpose of giving the newly drafted and young kids the opportunity to play the game and hone their skills for their future in the major league.

With Flordia having 16 teams competing in the rookie-level league, here are the teams listed from the southern state:

Representing East Division:

  • FCL Astros Blue
  • FCL Astros Orange
  • FCL Cardinals
  • FCL Marlins
  • FCL Mets
  • FCL Nationals

Representing North Division:

  • FCL Blue Jays
  • FCL Phillies
  • FCL Tigers
  • FCL Yankees

Representing South Division:

  • FCL Braves
  • FCL Orioles
  • FCL Pirates
  • FCL Rays
  • FCL Red Sox
  • FCL Twins

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