September 1, 2022 – Coastal Plain League (Coastal Plain) – Lexington County Blowfish Press Release
The Coastal Plain League today announced that the Lexington County Blowfish has been named the 2022 CPL Organization of the Year.
“The Blowfish had one of their best seasons in 2022,” said Justin Sellers, COO/Commissioner of the Coastal Plain League. “They have established themselves as a staple in Lexington County and the surrounding area. It’s a well-deserved honor and a testament to the hard work and passion Bill and Vicki put into their work every day. [Shanahan]Mast [Jinnette] and all their staff. We congratulate them on this achievement and look forward to what they have in store for us in the future!”
Lexington County was chosen after gathering feedback on every facet of an organization from team owners, general managers, umpires, players and league officials. Among the factors considered by voters, some, but not all, were the overall operations and atmosphere of an organization on game day, hospitality, community involvement and commitment of fans.
Finishing their eighth season in Lexington County and 17th overall in the Coastal Plain League, the Blowfish have focused on one simple theme: an ongoing commitment to our community. The Blowfish’s commitment to Lexington County begins much earlier each year than the summer college baseball season. With attendance at key events such as the annual Lexington County Chili Cookoff in February at the outdoor Icehouse Amphitheater, which saw another sold-out crowd in its eighth year and the proceeds of which benefited a number of local charities. The team is then heavily involved in the annual Shamrock Parade which parades down Main Street in downtown Lexington, a fixture for seven consecutive years now. The Blowfish also host a monthly community luncheon series at the stadium promoting Lexington County and featuring “Hot Stove” conversations about the upcoming season.
In 2022, the team tried something new by adding a one-of-a-kind nighttime “laser light show” to the already high-energy atmosphere of the Lexington County ballpark. It was a welcome addition by their fans, and they also held fireworks shows on key nights.
On the pitch, players and coaches fielded another competitive club, which is 9-1 in its last 10 games and failed to qualify for the CPL playoffs. The club also featured a record number of participating host families in 2022, as well as exceptional post-match meals for home and visiting teams.
Sticking to what has become a tradition, the Blowfish announced that their uniform theme was one that promoted cities and towns in Lexington County with their names displayed on the back of players’ shirts. After the season, the jerseys were auctioned off and the team raised $8,000 which was donated to each city’s designated charity. The 2022 season focused on Lexington County Utilities (aka Police and Fire Departments, Lexington County 911 Services, and the LC Sheriff’s Department, Library, and Museum) for a total of 38 different support services in Lexington County. Lexington County also saw the return of Fort Jackson Appreciation Night with nearly 1,000 basic training soldiers invited for an evening at the ballpark.
“It is a great honor to be voted Coastal Plain League Organization of the Year 2022,” said Blowfish co-owner Bill Shanahan. “My wife, Vicki, and I would like to thank our Assistant General Manager, Matt Jinnette, and our loyal, experienced and enthusiastic game day team, who continue to serve our community, partners and fans year after year. Grateful to the Coastal Owners, Officers and League Office of the Plain League for recognizing the special connection the Blowfish has with its home in Lexington County, SC. We look forward to continuing to provide affordable family entertainment and making an impact positive about Lexington County for years to come.”
Overall, this is the third time the Blowfish have earned this recognition. They first received the honor after their inaugural season in 2006 while in Colombia and then again in 2015, their first season in Lexington County.
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