Bridgeport Bluefish

The Bridgeport Bluefish were an American professional baseball team based in Bridgeport, Connecticut. The team was a member of the Liberty Division of the Atlantic League of Professional Baseball, which is not affiliated with Major League Baseball. They played their home games at The Ballpark at Harbor Yard from 1998 to 2017.

Bridgeport Bluefish
Park City Blues.PNG Bluefish cap.PNG
Team logo Cap insignia
LeagueAtlantic League of Professional Baseball (Liberty Division)
LocationBridgeport, Connecticut
BallparkCurrently none
Year founded1997
Year folded2017
Nickname(s)Park City Blues, Park City Nine, The Fish, Magic City
League championships1 (1999)
Division championships5 (1998, 1999, 2002, 2006, 2010)
Former ballparksThe Ballpark at Harbor Yard (1998–2017)
ColorsNavy blue, teal, silver, white
Retired numbers42, 21, 1, 19
OwnershipFrank Boulton
General ManagerPaul Herrmann
MediaConnecticut Post

The franchise had announced it would relocate to High Point, North Carolina, in 2019, but ceased operations instead. In its place, a new franchise not connected to the Bluefish began play in High Point called the High Point Rockers.

History of Bridgeport baseballEdit

The game of baseball was first played in Bridgeport, Connecticut soon after the Civil War ended. Teams that called the city home included the Victors, Soubrettes, Orators, Crossmen, Mechanics, Hustlers, Bolts, Americans, Bees, and Bears. Bridgeport was the home of Major Leaguer James "Orator" O'Rourke, who signed the first African-American to play for a professional baseball team in 1895.

Visiting Major League and Negro League teams often played exhibition games in the shadow of the Bridgeport's smokestacks. The last affiliated minor league baseball team, the Bridgeport Bees, played in the Interstate League and the Colonial League from 1941 to 1950. Professional baseball was not played in Bridgeport for about another half-century, until the arrival of the Bluefish in 1998.

Bridgeport BluefishEdit

The first game of the Bridgeport Bluefish was May 21, 1998. The team has been to five Atlantic League Championship Series. It won in 1999 against the Somerset Patriots and lost to Atlantic City in 1998, Newark in 2002, Lancaster in 2006, and York in 2010.

Some of the former major leaguers who have worn Bluefish jerseys include Endy Chávez, Shea Hillenbrand, Alex Hinshaw, José Offerman, Edgardo Alfonzo, Deivi Cruz, Junior Spivey, Quinton McCracken, Antonio Alfonseca, Willy Mo Pena, Joey Gathright, Adam Greenberg, and Mariano Duncan.

The Bluefish won their first league championship in 1999, led by their inaugural manager, and long time major leaguer – Willie Upshaw. The Bluefish have won the most games in Atlantic League history.[1][2] The land under The Ballpark at Harbor Yard was purchased by the city of Bridgeport from Donald Trump for $1 and with the forgiveness of back taxes owed on the property. The Jenkins Valve plant was demolished to make way for the stadium. The success of the Bluefish led to redevelopment of the South End, including construction of the Arena at Harbor Yard and a multiuse parking garage.[3]

The founders of the Bluefish were Mickey Herbert, Jack McGregor, Mary–Jane Foster, and the Bridgeport Waterfront Investors. Herbert anchored the team through a mayoral scandal and difficult financial circumstances. Prior to the 2006 season, the franchise was purchased by Get Hooked, LLC, a group of investors from Fairfield County that included McGregor and Foster. However, Get Hooked dropped the Bluefish prior to the 2008 season in favor of seeking a new ballpark for the city of Yonkers, New York. The Bluefish were purchased by Frank Boulton, who is also the owner of the Long Island Ducks and the founder of the Atlantic League.

The Bluefish became the first team in Atlantic League history to record 1,000 victories as a franchise in 2012. On June 27, 2012, the team defeated the York Revolution 2–1 at the Ballpark at Harbor Yard to capture the victory.[4][5]

For one day in May 2016, Jennie Finch was a guest manager for the Bluefish, thus becoming the first woman to manage a professional baseball team.[6] The team played and won one game that day.[6]

On August 8, 2017, the Bluefish announced that the 2017 season would be the team's last in Bridgeport. The city of Bridgeport plans to turn The Ballpark at Harbor Yard into a concert venue, leaving the team without a ballpark.[7] The amphitheater proposal is pending approval of the City Council,[8] but team owner Frank Boulton is exploring options for a new city to host Bluefish baseball.[9]

In April 2017, the City of High Point, North Carolina, approved $15 million from the city budget to begin land acquisition and engineering studies for a new $45 million, publicly funded stadium to be financed through limited-obligation tax bonds. The stadium was expected to be the new home for the Bluefish in 2019. It had yet to be determined where (or if) the Bluefish would play in 2018.[10]

On September 17, 2017, the Bluefish played the final game in their 20-year history at the Ballpark at Harbor Yard, losing 9–2 to the Somerset Patriots.[11] Despite having the best overall record in the Liberty Division, the Bluefish missed the playoffs, as they finished one game back of the Patriots in the first–half standings and two games back of their cross-sound rival Long Island Ducks in the second half.[12]

Though it had been planned for the Bluefish to relocate to High Point, later the team ceased operations at the end of the 2017 season. High Point got an expansion franchise that is not connected to the Bluefish (the High Point Rockers).

Logos and uniformsEdit

The official colors of the Bridgeport Bluefish were navy blue, teal, and silver. The primary logo consisted of the "Bluefish" wordmark in navy blue with white and teal outline superimposed over a depiction of a cartoon bluefish holding a baseball bat.

The primary cap was navy blue with a teal brim and button, with the cap logo depicting a bluefish interwoven with a capital "B" centered on the front. The home jersey was white with traditional navy blue piping below the collar and around the sleeves. The "Bluefish" wordmark is centered across the front in navy blue with white outline and teal drop shadow. The away jersey is grey with navy blue piping, and the "Bridgeport" wordmark centered across the front in navy blue with a white and teal outline. The Bluefish also have a teal alternate jersey, with navy piping with the "fishhook" wordmark centered across the front.

Season-by-season recordsEdit

Bridgeport Bluefish – 1998 to 2017[13]
Season First Half W–L Record First Half Winning Percentage First Half Finish Second Half W–L Record Second Half Winning Percentage Second Half Finish Overall W–L Record Overall Winning Percentage Overall Finish Playoffs
1998 31–18 .633 1st in League 32–18 .640 1st in League 63–36 .636 1st in League 1–3

Championship: Lost to Atlantic City Surf 3–1

1999 43–17 .717 1st in League 35–25 .583 2nd in League 78–42 .650 1st in League 3–1

Championship: def. Somerset Patriots 3–1

2000 35–35 .500 4th in North Division 43–26 .571 1st in North Division 78–61 .561 3rd in North Division 1–2

Division: Lost to Nashua Pride 2–1

2001 30–33 .476 3rd in North Division 36–27 .571 3rd in North Division 66–60 .524 3rd in North Division Did not qualify for the playoffs
2002 36–27 .571 1st in North Division 35–28 .556 1st in North Division 71–55 .563 1st in North Division 2–4

Division: def. Camden Riversharks 2–1; Championship: lost to Newark Bears 3–0

2003 34–29 .540 2nd in North Division 39–24 .619 1st in North Division 73–53 .579 1st in North Division 1–2

Division: Lost to Nashua Pride 2–1

2004 38–25 .603 2nd in North Division 34–29 .540 2nd in North Division 72–54 .571 1st in North Division Did not qualify for the playoffs

Long Island won First Half; Nashua won Second Half

2005 33–37 .471 2nd in North Division 22–48 .314 4th in North Division 55–85 .393 3rd in North Division Did not qualify for the playoffs
2006 38–25 .603 2nd in North Division 37–24 .607 1st in North Division 75–49 .605 1st in North Division 2–3

Division: def. Long Island Ducks 2–0; Championship: lost to Lancaster Barnstormers 3–0

2007 35–28 .556 2nd in North Division 25–38 .397 4th in North Division 60–66 .476 3rd in North Division Did not qualify for the playoffs
2008 33–37 .471 3rd in Liberty Division 34–36 .486 3rd in Liberty Division 67–73 .479 3rd in Liberty Division Did not qualify for the playoffs
2009 33–37 .471 3rd in Liberty Division 32–38 .457 3rd in Liberty Division 65–75 .464 3rd in Liberty Division Did not qualify for the playoffs
2010 36–34 .514 3rd in Liberty Division 47–23 .671 1st in Liberty Division 83–57 .592 1st in Liberty Division 3–4

Division: def. Southern Maryland Blue Crabs 3–1; Championship: lost to York Revolution 3–0

2011 32–31 .507 3rd in Liberty Division 36–28 .671 2nd in Liberty Division 68–59 .535 2nd in Liberty Division 0–1

Lost play in game to Southern Maryland Blue Crabs

2012 31–39 .443 3rd in Liberty Division 36–33 .522 2nd in Liberty Division 67–72 .482 2nd in Liberty Division Did not qualify for the playoffs
2013 23–47 .329 4th in Liberty Division 31–38 .449 2nd in Liberty Division 54–85 .388 3rd in Liberty Division Did not qualify for the playoffs
2014 22–48 .314 4th in Liberty Division 25–45 .357 4th in Liberty Division 47–93 .336 4th in Liberty Division Did not qualify for the playoffs
2015 26–44 .371 4th in Liberty Division 30–39 .435 3rd in Liberty Division 56–83 .403 3rd in Liberty Division Did not qualify for the playoffs
2016 30–40 .429 4th in Liberty Division 36–34 .514 2nd in Liberty Division 66–74 .471 4th in Liberty Division Did not qualify for the playoffs
2017 41–29 .586 2nd in Liberty Division 35–35 .500 2nd in Liberty Division 76–64 .543 1st in Liberty Division Did not qualify for the playoffs

Somerset won First Half; Long Island won Second Half

Totals (1998–2017) 660–660 .500 680–636 .517 1340–1296 .508 13–20 (.393)
  • 1 Atlantic League Championship (1999)
  • 5 Division Championships (1998, 1999, 2002, 2006, 2010)

Ferry CupEdit

The Bridgeport Bluefish contend with the Long Island Ducks over the Ferry Cup, which is sponsored by the Bridgeport & Port Jefferson Steamboat Company. The two teams border on Long Island Sound, and many fans of both teams regularly cross it to support them. The Ducks currently hold the Ferry Cup by winning the 2011 season series 12–6. As of 2011 the Bluefish-Ducks rivalry record is 114–112, in favor of Bridgeport.[14]


One of the Bridgeport Bluefish official mascots is an anthropomorphic bluefish named B.B. He wears the team's alternate jersey (number 98) with black sneakers. B.B. was born on May 29, 1997, in Cape Hatteras. He later migrated to the Long Island Sound and joined the Bluefish soon after. The mascot's name alludes to the initials of the team and its nickname.[15]

Captain L.I Sounder is another source of entertainment at the Harbor Yard. He wears a uniform of a sailor. L.I Sounder's name referred to the nautical rank of captain and a name for a Long Island Sound resident. Sounder occasionally appears at Bluefish home games.

Retired numbersEdit

42 (Jackie Robinson)
2B, Retired throughout professional baseball on April 15, 1997
21 (Roberto Clemente)
RF, Retired by the Bluefish in 2006[16]
19 (Luis Lopez)
3B, Retired by the Bluefish on September 19, 2015

1 (Angel Espada)

Guest managersEdit

On several occasions, the Bluefish had promotional nights in which former baseball players and managers, as well as other celebrities, have been enlisted to serve as guest managers.

Manager Date Opponent Result
Pete Rose June 16, 2014[17] Lancaster Barnstormers W 2–0
Paul O'Neill July 24, 2015[18] Long Island Ducks W 4–3
Jennie Finch May 29, 2016[19] Southern Maryland Blue Crabs W 3–1
Roger Clemens August 5, 2016[20] Long Island Ducks L 6–2
Ozzie Guillén August 19, 2016[21] Somerset Patriots L 9–3
New World Order
(Kevin Nash, Scott Hall, Sean Waltman)
September 2, 2016[22] Southern Maryland Blue Crabs W 8–6

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "Atlantic League Professional Baseball: History". Retrieved May 16, 2018.
  2. ^ Eric D. Lehman (March 7, 2015). Insiders' Guide® to Connecticut. Globe Pequot Press. ISBN 978-1-4930-1618-1.
  3. ^ "Bridgeport Renewal" (PDF). EPA. Archived from the original (PDF) on June 24, 2006. Retrieved May 26, 2006.
  4. ^ "Bluefish Win # 1,000". Retrieved April 8, 2016.
  5. ^ "Bridgeport Bluefish vs. York Revolution – Atlantic League of Professional Baseball Clubs – boxscore". Pointstreak Sports Technologies. Retrieved April 8, 2016.
  6. ^ a b Eisenberg, Matt (July 16, 2013). "Guest manager Jennie Finch leads Bridgeport Bluefish to win". Retrieved May 31, 2016.
  7. ^ "City To Turn Bluefish Ballpark Into Concert Venue". Bridgeport Bluefish. August 8, 2017. Archived from the original on August 8, 2017. Retrieved August 8, 2017.
  8. ^ Lackhart, Brian (August 7, 2017). "Bluefish baseball out, concerts in at Bridgeport's Harbor Yard". Connecticut Post. Retrieved August 8, 2017.
  9. ^ Speddon, Zach (August 14, 2017). "Bridgeport Bluefish Planning Their Future". Ballpark Digest. Retrieved August 14, 2017.
  10. ^ Speddon, Zach (September 18, 2017). "Bridgeport Bluefish Play Ballpark at Harbor Yard Finale". Ballpark Digest. Retrieved September 18, 2017.
  11. ^ "Archived Document". Archived from the original on September 18, 2017. Retrieved September 18, 2017.
  12. ^ "2017 Atlantic League Playoffs Complete". Retrieved May 15, 2018.
  13. ^ "Atlantic League Information". Retrieved April 8, 2016.
  14. ^ "Bluefish and Ducks introduce Ferry Cup". Bridgeport Bluefish. Retrieved May 12, 2009.
  15. ^ "Mascot Biographies". Bridgeport Bluefish. Retrieved October 2, 2008.
  16. ^ Roberto Clemente Night, Bridgeport Bluefish, August 14, 2008. Accessed March 5, 2009. "Roberto Clement Night."
  17. ^ "Pete Rose Manages the Bridgeport Bluefish Photos and Images | Getty Images". Retrieved September 14, 2016.
  18. ^ Pierson, John (July 25, 2015). "Yankees legend Paul O'Neill manages Bridgeport Bluefish to 4–3 win". SportzEdge. Archived from the original on May 21, 2016. Retrieved September 14, 2016.
  19. ^ "Guest manager Jennie Finch leads Bridgeport Bluefish to win". Retrieved September 14, 2016.
  20. ^ "Roger Clemens loses managerial debut, doesn't see himself as a full-time skipper". Retrieved September 14, 2016.
  21. ^ "Somerset Takes Opener Of Big Showdown". Retrieved September 14, 2016.
  22. ^ Werner, Barry. "Bridgeport Bluefish nWo jerseys are too sweet". Retrieved September 14, 2016.

External linksEdit

Preceded by
Atlantic City Surf
Atlantic League Champions
Bridgeport Bluefish

Succeeded by
Nashua Pride
Preceded by
Southern Maryland Blue Crabs
Liberty Division Champions
Bridgeport Bluefish

Succeeded by
Long Island Ducks
Preceded by
Nashua Pride
North Division Champions
Bridgeport Bluefish

Succeeded by
Newark Bears
Preceded by
Newark Bears
North Division Champions
Bridgeport Bluefish

Succeeded by
Nashua Pride
Preceded by
New League
Atlantic League
Best Regular Season Record
Bridgeport Bluefish

1998, 1999
Succeeded by
Nashua Pride 
North Division 2000
Somerset Patriots
South Division 2000