First-year Durham Bulls manager Jared Sandberg has experienced a fair share of ups and downs in his inaugural season with the Bull City’s Triple-A club.
“I definitely had to have a lot of patience with all the transactions and different players that we had come through here,” Sandberg said.
The Bulls endured 213 transactions up and down the Tampa Bay organizational ladder in 152 days of baseball this season. The club had 63 different names stitched on the backs of Bulls uniforms on a roster that peaks at 25.
This season’s roster turnover tilted a realistic shot of reaching the playoffs for the eighth time in nine years. The team recorded only 11 wins in 28 games during the month of July.
When the name of the game is developing talent, something is to be said for the advancement to and from the majors.
“It’s pretty cool to look out there on a couple of nights when we had seven of our own homegrown talent out there on the field manning different positions, or the mound,” Sandberg said. “I think that’s pretty special for the Rays organization to be able to have homegrown talent in Triple-A, and then to send the players that we send to the big leagues, that are drafted players.”
Durham’s furious finish pushed the team to a 74-70 record, the organization’s 15th winning season in 18 years as a member of the International League.
The Bulls finished third in the South Division, where every team sported a winning mark for the first time in IL history.
“To be able to come back to Durham where I played and be a part of the tradition that the Durham Bulls have, and the show that the front office puts on for the fans—it’s amazing,” Sandberg said. “It was a great season. I learned a lot, and I’m definitely looking forward to learning a lot more next year.”
Thanks to WRALSportsFan.com’s Jared Fialko for this capcom story & WRAL.com contributor Will Bratton for this capcom photo.