Sunday, March 14, 2021

The Airhogs Have Been Grounded

Usually around mid-February (I'm a little late this year) I check the baseball schedules for the local colleges and minor league teams here in the DFW Metroplex. Due to covid, most of the colleges still aren't having spectators, but that's okay since I'm really only looking to see if they'll be playing Air Force Academy or a California team. I usually try to get to at least one college or minor league game a season. 

As far as minor leagues, the American Association of Independant Baseball's Fort Worth Cats dissolved in 2014 ruling them out, so my standby team is the Grand Prairie AirHogs, but when I went to check their schedule I found out that they went out of business last year. Bummer. They had skipped all of the 2020 season due to Covid and I guess just couldn't recover from that. There are plans to turn the stadium into a, get this, major league cricket venue.

Anyhow, I thought I'd pay a brief tribute to the AirHogs. It was always fun to catch a game there.

From 2008 to 2019 I've probably attended a dozen games at QwikTrip Park, in fact I attended a game in their very first season 2008, and was able to get a few autographs on an inaugural season program. Pete Incaviglia was thier first Manager, and I was able to get him on a separate baseball card.

C Cody Merrill #14
OF Derek Holder #24
P Justin Garcia #2
P Vinnie DeChristofaro #27
P Nate Harris #30
INF Brandon Carter 
INF Billy Munoz #39

Among the other games I was able to attend at QuikTrip Park, was the 2009 American Association All-Star Game. 
Only $10 to go to an All-Star Game. Granted it's only the Independant League, but still...

I got programs signed by players from the North Team and from the South Team.
South All-Star Team
P Logan Williamson - Shreveport Captains
OF Brian Fryer - Fort Worth Cats
P Kieran Mattison - Grand Prairie Airhogs
OF Mike Conroy - Grand Prairie
1B John Allen - Fort Worth Cats
INF Cameron Blair - Fort Worth Cats
C JB Tucker - Grand Prairie Airhogs
OF Kenard Bibbs - El Paso Diablos
P Jakob Cunningham - Shreveport Captains
P Justin Dowdy - Shreveport Captains

North All-Star Team
P Adam Cowhart - Wichita Wingnuts
P Derek Blacksher - Wichita Wingnuts
P Gabriel Medina - Wichita Wingnuts
P Nick Singleton - Sioux City Explorers
P Trevor Fox - Sioux Falls Canaries
P Brett Reid - Sioux City Explorers
P Chris Thompson - Lincoln Salt Dogs
OF Cory Harris - Sioux Falls Canaries
P Brandon Kintzler - St Paul Saints
OF Brent Krause - St Paul Saints

And of course, I scored the game, with the North (boooo) winning 6-2.

Former Indians/Dodgers prospect Kieran Mattison took the loss giving up those 4 runs in the sixth.


  1. Cool team name. Sad to see so many minors and independent teams who have shut down.