Atlanta Braves Team History
Perini sold the Braves to a Chicago-based group led by William Bartholomay in 1962. Almost immediately Bartholomay started shopping the Braves to a larger television market. Keen to attract them, the fast-growing city of Atlanta, led by Mayor Ivan Allen, Jr. constructed a new $18 million, 52,000-seat ballpark in less than one year, Atlanta Stadium, which was officially opened in 1965 in hopes of luring an existing major league baseball and/or NFL/AFL team. After the city failed to lure the Kansas City A’s to Atlanta (the A’s would move to Oakland in 1968), the Braves announced their intention to move to Atlanta for the 1965 season. However, an injunction filed in Wisconsin kept the Braves in Milwaukee for one final year. In 1966, the Braves completed the move to Atlanta.
In 1976, the team was purchased by media magnate Ted Turner, owner of superstation WTBS, as a means to keep the team (and one of his main programming staples) in Atlanta. The financially strapped Turner used money already paid to the team for their broadcast rights as a down-payment. It was then that Atlanta Stadium was renamed Atlanta-Fulton County Stadium. Turner quickly gained a reputation as a quirky, hands-on baseball owner.
Turner used the Braves as a major programming draw for his fledgling cable network, making the Braves the first franchise to have a regular, nationwide audience and fanbase. WTBS marketed the team as “The Atlanta Braves: America’s Team”, a nickname that still sticks in some areas of the country, especially the South, today. Among other things, in 1976 Turner suggested the nickname “Channel” for pitcher Andy Messersmith and jersey number 17, in order to promote the television station that aired Braves games. Major League Baseball quickly nixed the idea.
The 1995 World Series matched the Atlanta Braves against the Cleveland Indians, with the Braves winning in six games to capture their third World Championship in franchise history (along with 1914 in Boston and 1957 in Milwaukee), making them the first franchise to win three crowns in three different cities. The Series was also Cleveland’s first Series appearance in 41 years and marked the resumption of the Fall Classic after the previous year’s Series was canceled due to a players’ strike.
In December 2005, team owner Time Warner, who inherited the Braves after purchasing TBS in 1996, announced it was placing the team for sale. Liberty Media began negotiations to purchase the team.
In February 2007, after more than a year of negotiations, Time Warner agreed to a deal that would sell the Braves to Liberty Media Group (a company which owned a large amount of stock in Time Warner, Inc.), pending approval by 75 percent of MLB owners and the Commissioner of Baseball, Bud Selig. The deal included the exchange of the Braves, valued in the deal at $450 million, a hobbyist magazine publishing company, and $980 million cash, for 68.5 million shares of Time Warner stock held by Liberty Media, then worth approximately $1.48 billion. Team President Terry McGuirk anticipated no change in the current front office structure, personnel, or day-to-day operations of the Braves. Liberty Media is not expected to take any type of “active” ownership in terms of day-to-day operations.
The stadium will be in Cumberland (also known as Cumberland/Galleria area), a fast-growing edge city in southeastern Cobb County. The ballpark will be located next to the highway interchange between Interstate 75 and Interstate 285. The stadium will have an Atlanta address due to its location in ZIP code 30339, which is shared with the neighboring community of Vinings. The United States Postal Service considers this area to be unincorporated Atlanta. The Braves say the location is “near the geographic center of the Braves’ fan base.”
The team announced at the stadium’s groundbreaking that the naming rights were sold to SunTrust Banks for a 25-year partnership. Braves officials anticipate a capacity of about 41,500, which is approximately 8,000 fewer than Turner Field.
The Atlanta Braves are an American professional baseball franchise based in the Atlanta metropolitan area. The franchise competes in Major League Baseball (MLB) as a member of the National League (NL) East division. The Braves played home games at Turner Field in Atlanta from 1997 to 2016, and play spring training games in Lake Buena Vista, Florida. In 2017, the team will move to SunTrust Park, a new stadium complex in the Cumberland district of Cobb County just northwest of Atlanta.
Boston – Milwaukee – Atlanta
2000 – Present / Major League Baseball
1883 – 1999 / National League
1966 – Present / Atlanta Braves
1953 – 1965 / Milwaukee Braves
1941 – 1952 / Boston Braves
1936 – 1940 / Boston Bees
1912 – 1935 / Boston Braves
1911 / Boston Rustlers
1907 – 1910 / Boston Doves
1883 – 1906 / Boston Beaneaters
Braves – James Gaffney, who became president of Boston’s National League franchise in 1911, was a member of Tammany Hall, the Democratic Party machine that controlled New York City politics throughout the 19th century. The Tammany name was derived from Tammamend, a Delaware Valley Indian chief. The society adopted an Indian headdress as its emblem and its members became known as Braves.
World Series 1
1995, 1957, 1914
2017 – Present / SunTrust Park
1997 – 2016 / Turner Field
1976 – 1996 / Atlanta-Fulton County Stadium
1966 – 1976 / Atlanta Stadium
1953 – 1965 / Milwaukee County Stadium
1915 – 1952 / Braves Field
1936 – 1941 / National League Park
1914 – 1915 / Fenway Park
1894 – 1914 / South End Grounds
1894 / Congress Street Grounds
1883 – 1894 / South End Grounds
2007 – Present / Liberty Media Corporation
1996 – 2007 / Time Warner
1976 – 1996 / Ted Turner
1962 – 1976 / William Bartholomay
1944 – 1962 / Lou Perini
1935 – 1945 / Bob Quinn
1922 – 1935 / Emil Fuchs
1919 – 1922 / George W. Grant
1915 – 1918 / Percy Haughton
1912 – 1915 / James Gaffney
1911 / William Hepburn Russell
1909 – 1910 / John Dovey
1907 – 1909 / George & John Dovey
1883 – 1909 / Arthur Soden
3 Dale Murphy
6 Bobby Cox
10 Chipper Jones
21 Warren Spahn
29 John Smoltz
31 Greg Maddux
35 Phil Niekro
41 Eddie Matthews
42 Jackie Robinson
44 Hank Aaron
47 Tom Glavine
1988 – Present / Homer
1971 – 1979 / Rally
*Blue is this team’s history