Toledo Mud Hens
The Toledo Mud Hens are a professional Minor League Baseball team based in Toledo, Ohio. The Mud Hens play in the International League and are affiliated with the Detroit Tigers franchise of Major League Baseball, based about 50 miles (80 km) north of Toledo. They play their home games at Fifth Third Field.
|Toledo Mud Hens|
Founded in 1883
|Minor league affiliations|
|League||International League (1965–present)|
|Major league affiliations|
|Current||Detroit Tigers (1967–1973, 1987–present)|
|Minor league titles|
|League titles (4)|
|Division titles (6)|
|Nickname||Toledo Mud Hens (1965–present)|
|Colors||Navy, red, white, gold|
|Ballpark||Fifth Third Field (2002–present)|
|Ned Skeldon Stadium (1965–2001)|
|Toledo Mud Hens Baseball Club, Inc.|
|General Manager||Erik Ibsen|
Professional baseball had been played off and on in Toledo since 1883, but the Mud Hens era began in 1896 with the "Swamp Angels", who played in the Interstate League. They played in Bay View Park, which was outside the Toledo city limits and therefore not covered by the city's blue laws. The park was located near marshland inhabited by American coots, also known as "mud hens." For this reason, the local press soon dubbed the team the "Mud Hens"—a nickname that has stuck to Toledo baseball teams for all but a few years since. After only one year, though, the team moved to Armory Park.
An International League franchise moved to Toledo from Richmond, Virginia in 1965 adopting the Mud Hens name to become the current incarnation of the Toledo Mud Hens. However they were based in Maumee, Ohio at the converted Fort Miami Fairgrounds. The local ownership group led by Ned Skeldon signed with the New York Yankees to be its top minor league team. In 1967, the Detroit Tigers replaced the Yankees as its major league affiliate. That year, the team was third in the league but claimed the Governor's Cup via the four team playoff. The next year the team won a record 83 games and the league pennant, while failing to win the cup again. The team was affiliated with Detroit until 1974. In 1974 and 1975, the Philllies affiliated with the Mud Hens followed by two years affiliated with Cleveland Indians. All four seasons were losing seasons.pg. 77
The Minnesota Twins took over as the team's major leagues affiliate and brought in Gene Cook as general manager, who was good at promoting the team, particularly as a family event. Cook also got Jamie Farr to incorporate the Mud Hen's in Farr's M*A*S*H character's background.pg. 77
- Billy Bean
- Billy Beane
- Moe Berg
- Tony Clark
- Octavio Dotel
- Doug Fister
- Curtis Granderson
- Mike Hessman
- Omar Infante
- Addie Joss
- Gabe Kapler
- Shane Loux
- Craig Monroe
- Bobby Murcer
- Jeff Newman
- Kirby Puckett
- Max Scherzer
- Mose Solomon
- Casey Stengel
- Jim Thorpe
- Tom Underwood
- Jim Walewander
- Phil Weintraub
- Hack Wilson
- Josh Zeid
The records of the last five Toledo Mud Hens seasons are listed below.
|2015||61||83||.424||4th in IL West||Did Not Qualify|
|2016||68||76||.472||4th in IL West||Did Not Qualify|
|2017||70||71||.496||3rd in IL West||Did Not Qualify|
|2018||73||66||.525||1st in IL West||Lost Governors' Cup Semifinals|
|2019||66||74||.471||T-2nd in IL West||Did Not Qualify|
|5-Year Record||338||370||.477||1 Division Title||0 League Titles|
Toledo Mud Hens roster
- M*A*S*H character Maxwell Klinger (played by Jamie Farr) hailed from Toledo and often mentioned the Mud Hens as his favorite baseball team throughout the series. He was often seen wearing a Toledo Mud Hens cap (which bears a strong resemblance to a Texas Rangers cap). In fact, Klinger feels so strongly about the Mud Hens that he gets put on KP duty for a month when he punches his arch nemesis, Sgt. Zelmo Zale, who insulted the Mud Hens. Like Klinger, Farr was born and raised in Toledo, and the Mud Hens retired jersey #1 in Farr's honor.
- The title character of the comic strip Crankshaft was a pitcher for the Mud Hens just before World War II when he enlisted in the Army. He invariably wears a Mud Hens cap in the strip, and reminisces often about his playing days. In the summer of 2016 the Mud Hens retired jersey #13 in Crankshaft's honor.
- Lou Brown, the manager of the Cleveland Indians in the fictional film Major League, was said to have managed in Toledo prior to managing the Indians.
- Richard Pryor's character, Montgomery Brewster, in the 1985 film Brewster's Millions was said to have previously pitched for the Mud Hens.
- List of baseball parks in Toledo, Ohio
- Current and former Toledo Mud Hens players
- The Toledo Baseball Guide of the Mud Hens 1883–1943, Ralph Elliott Lin Weber, 1944.
- Baseball Reference