Happy Birthday Arizona Diamondbacks!
By Jake Oliver
Can you believe that is the Arizona Diamondbacks' birthday today? No, this isn't when they played their first game in the MLB in 1998. That's their "baseball birthday", but this is the organization's birthday. Way back in 1995, on March 9th, MLB approved the Arizona Diamondbacks and Tampa Bay Devil Rays to be the newest franchises in the MLB.
They were the 13th and 14th expansion teams in league history and have been known as sister teams. Of course, now the Devil Rays are just known as the Rays and the Diamondbacks are still, well, the Diamondbacks.
The Arizona Diamondbacks were the fastest expansion team in American pro sports history to win their sport's championship. In this case, it was the 2001 World Series against the Yankees. Likewise, they have appeared in the playoffs 6 of their 24 seasons, or 25% of the time. They have a career record of 1840-1946.
Their winningest manager is Kirk Gibson who went 353-375. They have retired the numbers 20 and 51 for Luis Gonzalez and Randy Johnson, along with Jackie Robinson's #42. Additionally, they have one player in the Hall of Fame wearing their cap, Randy Johnson.
In the team's history, there has been 9 managers, however there's only been 5 to last more than 2 years. The longest tenured manager in team history so far is Bob Melvin and Torey Lovullo. They each managed for 5 seasons, however Torey has managed more games than Bob Melvin. To make it official, the first game Torey manages this year will make him the longest-tenured manager in team history.
As for the ownership, well Ken Kendrick bought the Dbacks from Jerry Colangelo in 2004 and the rest is history. The team is still run by Kendrick and President Derrick Hall. Additionally, the team's elite GM is Mike Hazen. He's been here since 2017. Here's to the Dbacks future success and to the many fans out there waiting for baseball to come back!