Founded in 2002
Gastonia, North Carolina
|Minor league affiliations|
|League||Coastal Plain League|
|Minor league titles|
|Colors||Black, Gold, White, Purple |
|Ballpark||Sims Legion Park|
The Grizzlies are Gaston County's hometown team. The team is known for unique promotions including Garbage Can Nachos, Dunk the GM, Grandma Beauty Pageant, Dig for the Diamond, Salute to Underwear Night, Flatulence Fun Night, and Midnight Madness Night. The Grizzlies are also known for their fireworks shows.
The Grizzlies have played at Sims Legion Park since their founding in 2002. There is an ongoing effort to build a new ballpark in Gastonia, but it is not guaranteed to be a new home for this team. City officials are favoring a potential partnership which would put an Atlantic League expansion team in the new ballpark. Grizzlies ownership have said they would not share the stadium.
The inaugural Midnight Madness game took place on July 9, 2010 against the Forest City Owls. The first pitch was at Midnight with festivities before the game including bed races, eating contests, players in the dunk tank, Home Run Derby and a live band in the Beer Garden. The game drew 3,150 fans with the last fan entering the ballpark at 1:39AM. The game won best promotion at 2010 Summer Ball Conference. The 2011 Midnight Madness was even a bigger success drawing more fans than the previous year.
2014 was the most successful season in the Grizzlies thirteen-year history, both on the field and off the field. The Grizzlies drew just under 60,000 fans, breaking the previous attendance record that has been set for four straight years The Grizzlies also set the single game attendance record with 4,381 fans; along with two other games over 4,000 fans.
Prior to the 2014 season, the Gastonia Grizzlies were named the Gaston Gazette "Person of the Year". Normally the award goes to an individual but the Grizzlies continued community impact helped earn them the honor.
The Coastal Plain League congratulated the Grizzlies with the title of Organization of the Year in 2012.
The Grizzlies have also received multiple Promotion of the Year awards at the National Summer League Conference.
The 2011 Grizzlies entered the CPL playoffs as the 6 seed and went on to upset the #3 seed Thomasville Hitoms, the #4 seed Forest City Owls in the Semifinals and the #1 seed in the nation the Edenton Steamers to win the Pettit Cup Championship. Michael Heesch was named Rawlings Defensive Player of the Year by finishing the season at 9-0 including three shutouts in the CPL playoffs. Heesch in addition to RHP Derek Epps were named to the Perfect Game Summer Ball All American Team. The Grizzlies finished the year as the #30 ranked team in the country by Perfect Game.
The Grizzlies have broken their own attendance record for 10 straight seasons. The team averages 2,053 fans per game for the season. The team's single game attendance record was set on May 31, 2014, with 4,381 fans. The Grizzlies would go on to sell out two other games in 2014.
Highest single-season attendance figures
|Season||Total Att.||Openings||Game Average|
- Barrett, Michael (January 20, 2019). "Many questions remain about what teams will play in FUSE stadium". The Gaston Gazette. Retrieved January 24, 2019.
- Spedden, Zach (January 23, 2019). "Grizzlies Not Guaranteed Use of Proposed Gastonia Ballpark". Ballpark Digest. August Publications. Retrieved January 24, 2019.
- Spedden, Zach (August 5, 2019). "Atlantic League Could Land in New Gastonia Ballpark". Ballpark Digest. August Publications. Retrieved August 5, 2019.