The Hillsboro Hops are a minor league baseball team in the northwest United States, located in Hillsboro, Oregon, a city in the Portland metropolitan area, west of Portland. The team was founded in 2013 after the Yakima Bears moved to Hillsboro after the 2012 season.
Founded in 2013
|Current||Class A-Short Season (2013–present)|
|Minor league affiliations|
|League||Northwest League (2013–present)|
|Major league affiliations|
|Minor league titles|
|League titles (3)|
|Division titles (3)|
|Nickname||Hillsboro Hops (2013–present)|
|Colors||Navy blue, green, light blue, white|
|Ballpark||Ron Tonkin Field (2013–present)|
|Short Season, LLC|
|General Manager||K.L. Wombacher|
After a proposal to move to Vancouver, Washington, fell through, the team received an offer to move to Hillsboro, Oregon, in June 2012, with plans to start play there in 2013. The city and team reached a deal, with city council approval on June 5, and approval by the league and the franchise on June 8, 2012. The city signed the agreement with the team on June 26, with approval by Major League Baseball coming in August. Ground breaking for a new 4,500-seat stadium took place on September 21, 2012, and the new name of the Hops was announced on October 16, 2012.
The Hillsboro Hops replaced the Triple-A Portland Beavers of the Pacific Coast League, who relocated to Tucson at the end of the 2010 season. The Portland area went without minor league baseball in 2011 and 2012. The Hops opened the 2013 season at Salem on June 14 followed by the home opener on June 17.
The team's inaugural game was a road loss at Salem. and the first win came on June 17 in the home opener against Eugene. Barley, the team's mascot, was introduced on June 28, 2013. The Hops set a franchise record for attendance for the 2014 season with 138,732, and won their division and the league championship. The team was managed to the title by J. R. House, whose coaching staff included former major leaguers Doug Drabek and Mark Grace. Hillsboro swept the championship series against the three-time NWL defending champion Vancouver Canadians. The team set another franchise attendance record in 2015 with 143,412 (average of 3,774 for 38 dates) while winning a second consecutive league title.
The Hops hosted the NWL All-Star Game in 2017.
On August 28, 2019 the Hops clinched a playoff berth for the 6th straight season breaking the Northwest League record previously held by the Vancouver Canadians at 5 straight seasons. They faced the Salem-Keizer Volcanoes in the divisional round, were they won the series 2-0, and advanced to Northwest League finals for the first time since 2015. In Game 1 of the NWL Finals, the Hops entered the bottom of the 9th trailing 3-1 but put up four runs in the inning including a walk-off 3 run homer by Andy Yerzy. The Hops got smashed in Game 2, losing 9-1 but bounced back again in Game 3 with a two-run ninth inning rally to snag the win. Game 4 felt like Game 2 all over again with the Hops getting shut out this time and losing 6-0. Then in Game 5 The Hops would capture their third NWL title, and their first since 2015, winning the series 3-2.
The Hops' first game was on June 14, 2013, on the road at the Salem-Keizer Volcanoes, a 3-2 loss. Ryan Gebhardt had the team's first hit and Brian Billigen earned the first RBI. The team's first sellout came in the 2013 home opener with 4,710 fans, who watched Jordan Parr hit the first home run in the Hops' history. The Hops won their first division title and league championship during the 2014 season.
|2014||48–28||1st||J. R. House||League Champions|
|2015||45–31||1st||Shelley Duncan||League Champions|
|2019||48-28||1st||Javier ColIna||League Champions|
The team name is a reference to the plant used in beer brewing (Oregon is the second-largest hop-producing US state by volume), as well as to various baseball terms such as the short hop, bad hop, and crow hop. No previous professional or collegiate sports team has ever been called the "Hops". The team's logo includes a hop cone wearing a baseball hat, evergreen trees, and Mount Hood. Team colors are green, navy blue, and light blue. The Hops' mascot is Barley, who is green with a blue baseball cap. (Barley is another plant used in beer brewing.) The team's branding and logo was named by Ballpark Digest as the best in Minor League Baseball for 2013.
In March 2013, the team announced a three-year deal with BridgePort Brewing Company to be the official beer of the Hops. Advantis Credit Union, Les Schwab Tires, Nike, Tuality Healthcare, and The Oregonian were the founding sponsors.
Rich Burk was signed as the team's radio announcer on KPOJ (620 AM).
Hillsboro Hops roster
Minor league affiliations
|AAA||Reno Aces||Pacific Coast League||Reno, Nevada|
|AA||Jackson Generals||Southern League||Jackson, Tennessee|
|Advanced A||Visalia Rawhide||California League||Visalia, California|
|A||Kane County Cougars||Midwest League||Geneva, Illinois|
|Short Season A||Hillsboro Hops||Northwest League||Hillsboro, Oregon|
|Rookie||Missoula Osprey||Pioneer League||Missoula, Montana|
|AZL D-backs||Arizona League||Scottsdale, Arizona|
|DSL D-backs||Dominican Summer League||Boca Chica, Dominican Republic|
- "2019 Hops Coaching Staff Announced". hillsborohops.com. Retrieved 23 May 2019.
- Courtney, Ross (May 27, 2011). "Bad news, Bears: Team takes one step closer to relocation". Yakima Herald-Republic. Archived from the original on July 28, 2013. Retrieved October 17, 2012.
- Theen, Andrew (June 6, 2012). "Hillsboro sets stage for baseball's return to the Portland metro area". The Oregonian. Retrieved October 17, 2012.
- Stevens, Suzanne (June 6, 2012). "Hillsboro OKs baseball deal with Yakima Bears". Portland Business Journal. Retrieved October 17, 2012.
- Ho, Sally (June 19, 2012). "Yakima Bears agree to Hillsboro's terms for baseball deal". The Oregonian. Retrieved October 17, 2012.
- Ho, Sally (June 27, 2012). "Hillsboro's baseball deal is approved". The Oregonian. Retrieved October 17, 2012.
- Manning, Rob (June 27, 2012). "Hillsboro Approves Deal To Bring Baseball To City". News. Oregon Public Broadcasting. Retrieved July 4, 2012.
- Theen, Andrew (August 21, 2012). "Hillsboro and Yakima Bears clear final hurdle for baseball relocation". The Oregonian. Retrieved August 21, 2012.
- Giegerich, Andy (September 21, 2012). "Hillsboro breaks stadium ground, name comes next". Portland Business Journal. Retrieved September 21, 2012.
- Giegerich, Andy (October 16, 2012). "Hillsboro has the Hops: Baseball team name honors agricultural roots". Portland Business Journal. Retrieved October 17, 2012.
- Culverwell, Wendy (November 19, 2012). "Hillsboro Hops debut $11M stadium June 17". Portland Business Journal. Retrieved November 19, 2012.
- Smith, Jeff (June 14, 2013). "Hillsboro Hops: Even in defeat, history made as Portland area's new team opens season". The Oregonian. Retrieved 16 June 2013.
- Smith, Jeff (June 18, 2013). "Hillsboro Hops: After home-opening party, Hops ready for 'Tony Gwynn Opening Day'". The Oregonian. Retrieved 19 June 2013.
- Alger, Tyson (June 28, 2013). "Hillsboro Hops: Meet "Barley", Hillsboro's new mascot (photos)". The Oregonian. Retrieved 30 June 2013.
- Nemec, Andrew (September 1, 2014). "Hillsboro Hops win 48th game in regular season finale, best in short-season baseball". The Oregonian. Retrieved 2 September 2014.
- Nemec, Andrew (September 7, 2014). "Hillsboro Hops clinch Northwest League championship". The Oregonian. Retrieved 9 September 2014.
- "Northwest League: Attendance 2015". MiLB.com. Minor League Baseball.
- Tokito, Mike (September 10, 2015). "In Year 3, Hillsboro Hops continue to grow on and off the field". The Oregonian/OregonLive. Retrieved 30 October 2015.
- "Hillsboro Clinches Playoffs for Sixth Straight Year!". MiLB.com. Retrieved 2019-09-08.
- "2019 Northwest League Playoffs | MiLB.com Events | The Official Site of Minor League Baseball". MiLB.com. Retrieved 2019-09-13.
- "Hillsboro Hops take home the 2019 NWL Championship". NBC Sports Northwest. 2019-09-11. Retrieved 2019-09-13.
- Canzano, John (June 17, 2013). "Canzano: Baseball's triumphant return with Hillsboro Hops comes with big-time lessons". The Oregonian. Retrieved 19 June 2013.
- Theen, Andrew (October 16, 2012). "Hops to the future: Hillsboro Hops baseball era begins". The Oregonian. Retrieved 17 October 2012.
- Redden, Jim (October 16, 2012). "Baseball team now Hillsboro Hops". The Portland Tribune. Retrieved October 16, 2012.
- Theen, Andrew (October 16, 2012). "Hillsboro Hops release name via social media, drawing both praise and disappointment (with poll)". The Oregonian. Retrieved 17 October 2012.
- "2013 Logo/Branding of the Year: Hillsboro Hops". Ballpark Digest. September 17, 2013. Retrieved 23 September 2013.
- Theen, Andrew (March 6, 2013). "BridgePort named official beer of the Hillsboro Hops, will create special beer for the ballpark". The Oregonian. Retrieved 7 March 2013.
- Stevens, Suzanne (March 6, 2013). "Hillsboro Hops sign BridgePort Brewing as official beer". Portland Business Journal. Retrieved 7 March 2013.
- Goldfield, Robert (June 6, 2013). "Credit union 'Hops' to it". Portland Business Journal. Retrieved 7 June 2013.
- Smith, Jeff (March 11, 2013). "Rich Burk named radio broadcaster of Hillsboro Hops baseball". The Oregonian. Retrieved 11 March 2013.