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The Miami Marlins was the name of a Class AAA American minor league baseball franchise based in Miami, Florida, that played in the International League from 1956 through 1960.

The Marlins were a transplanted version of the original Syracuse Chiefs. They were created on December 20, 1955, when the Syracuse club (a member of the IL as early as 1886 and a continuous member since 1934) was sold to Sidney Salomon (future founding owner of the St. Louis Blues of the National Hockey League) and Elliot Stein.

The 1955 Chiefs, an affiliate of the Philadelphia Phillies, finished only two games out of the playoffs, but drew only 85,000 fans, last in the eight-team league. In the Marlins' debut season in Miami, the club finished third and attracted 288,000 spectators, second in the IL circuit. Attendance dwindled in the years that followed, however, and by 1960 the Marlins were at the bottom of the IL, with fewer than 110,000 paying fans. The franchise moved to San Juan, Puerto Rico, in 1961, but after little more than a month of play the Marlins moved again to Charleston, West Virginia on May 19. In 1962, the franchise moved to Atlanta, Georgia. In 1966, when the Milwaukee Braves moved to Atlanta, the franchise relocated to Richmond, Virginia, where it played as the Richmond Braves for 43 seasons, through 2008. The franchise is scheduled to move to Gwinnett County, Georgia in 2009.[1] The current Syracuse Chiefs club, reformed in 1961, is actually the transplanted Montreal Royals.

Notable Marlins during the 1956-60 period were Leroy "Satchel" Paige, the great former Negro Leagues pitcher then in his 50s, three-time league all-star infielder Forrest "Woody" Smith, 1959 IL earned run average champ Artie Kay, and future big-leaguers, infielder Jerry Adair and pitcher Rudy Arias. On August 7, 1956, the largest crowd in minor league history (57‚000) came to see Miami's 50-year-old Satchel Paige beat Columbus at the Orange Bowl. Its managers were Don Osborn (1956-57), Kerby Farrell (1958), Pepper Martin (1959), and Al Vincent (1960). Its home park was Miami Stadium.

There was then a separate franchise, also called the Miami Marlins who played in the Florida State League from 1962-1970 and then from 1982-1988. They became the Miami Miracle in 1989 and then the Fort Myers Miracle in 1992. (They were called the Miami Orioles from 1971-1981.)

In February 2008, it was announced that the Florida Marlins will change their name to Miami Marlins when they move into their planned new stadium at the former site of the Orange Bowl in 2012.

Contents

Affiliations

The IL Miami Marlins were affiliated with the following major league teams:

Year Affiliation(s)
1956-58 Philadelphia Phillies
1959-60 Baltimore Orioles

See also

References

External links

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