The Arkansas Travelers are a minor league baseball team located in North Little Rock, east of the Broadway Bridge. The Travelers play in the Texas League, a minor league division that is made up eight other minor league teams. The team is ranked in the AA baseball category, which is one step above a farm club, one step below AAA, and two steps below Major League Baseball.
The Travelers played their home games at Travelers Field (renamed Ray Winder Field in 1966) in Little Rock from the ballpark's opening on April 13, 1932, until 2007 when the team moved to a new stadium in North Little Rock called Dickey-Stephens Park. The City of North Little Rock paid for Dickey-Stephens Park by a voter-approved one-cent sales tax with the help of a partnership by the Travelers and Little Rock financier Warren Stephens. Since the stadium's opening, the Tulsa Drillers' batting coach Mike Coolbaugh was killed by a stray line drive to the neck.
History of Travelers Baseball
The Travelers were inducted as a professional baseball team in 1895. The team played in the Southern Association league in the early days, winning the pennant in 1920, 1937, 1942 and 1951. Before the 1932 season the team played games at Kavanaugh Field, which is now home to Central High School's Quigley Stadium.
The Travelers were the first professional sports team to be named after a state rather than a city, as they were renamed from the Little Rock Travelers to the Arkansas Travelers in 1957. The next year the team was sold to the city of Shreveport, Louisiana, and the Travelers did not play a 1959 season in Little Rock.
The Arkansas Travelers are currently under the affiliation of the major league baseball team the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim (set in 2001), and were previously under the St. Louis Cardinals (from 1966-2000) and the Philadelphia Phillies for a short period of time (1963-1965). The team has won Texas League titles in 1971, 1977, 1979, 1980, 1989, 2001, and 2005.
|1895||25-47||team disbanded mid-season|
|1918||41-28||2nd||league ended season early|
|1942||87-59||1st||lost in league finals|
|1951||93-60||1st||lost in league finals|
|1956||53-101||team moved to Montgomery, AL|
|1964||95-61||1st||lost in league finals|
|1966||81-59||1st||lost in first round|
|1968||82-58||1st||lost in league finals|
|1978||77-55||2nd||lost in first round|
|1983||69-67||3rd||lost in first round|
|1985||64-70||5th||lost in first round|
|1998||80-60||1st||lost in first round|
- Nate Hinkel, "Natural Game Evolves in Natural State," Arkansas Business, May 29, 2006.