Trinity Sports Holdings, the principal owner of the Williamsport Crosscutters (Short Season A; NY-Penn League) and the Memphis Redbirds (Class AAA; Pacific Coast League) has been named the Organization of the Year by Ballpark Digest.
"It's a true honor," Peter Freund, Principal Owner of Trinity Sports Holdings, said of the award. "I'm very humbled by it, and I'm very appreciative of it."
The Williamsport Crosscutters and BB&T Ballpark landed on the national stage this past season when the ballpark played host to the first annual Little League Classic-a regular-season matchup featuring the Pittsburgh Pirates and St. Louis Cardinals that aired nationally on ESPN.
Major League Baseball has already confirmed that the Little League Classic will return in 2018, and the Crosscutters believe the game delivered benefits for both the community and the franchise.
"I think more than anything, it gives Williamsport and BB&T Ballpark more legitimacy on the Minor League Baseball landscape," said Gabe Sinicropi, Jr., the Crosscutters vice president of marketing & public relations. "It helped a greater number of people know what we've been doing for 25 years and that was certainly heartening for all of us."
The Crosscutters also introduced over $4 million in improvements to BB&T Ballpark at Historic Bowman Field prior to the 2017 season. Some of those upgrades-including the UPMC Susquehanna Loggers Landing premium deck and all-new stadium seating-helped to bring modern amenities to a classic ballpark.
In Memphis, the Redbirds have seen their average attendance increase by 26 percent in the past two seasons. The club also unveiled some unique initiatives before the 2017 season, including the return of barbecue from the legendary Rendezvous and a new team store. Perhaps the most notable change, however, was a new logo. Prior to the season, the Redbirds unveiled a branding concept that maintained ties to the Cardinals, while adding a distinct Memphis flavor through several elements, including a primary logo that replicated a neon street sign.
Freund, credits the Redbirds and Crosscutters office led by Sinicropi and vice president, general manager Doug Estes saying, "It's really thanks to the work of both staffs. They go above and beyond."
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Since 2002, Ballpark Digest has been covering the business and culture of baseball, ballparks and more, from MLB and MiLB to summer collegiate and college. Find them online at www.BallparkDigest.com or on twitter @BallparkDigest.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.