When Baltimore’s WJZ interviewed Hall of Famer Brooks Robinson in 2007, the former Oriole said he had no desire to own a team after retiring from Major League Baseball.
But Robinson apparently saw something he liked in Opening Day Partners, a minor league baseball organization that owns and operates franchises like the Southern Maryland Blue Crabs.
As co-owner of the team in Charles County, Robinson’s knack for success is rubbing off on the Blue Crabs.
“Here in Southern Maryland, we’re very lucky to have a winning team on the field,” says Paul Braverman, the Blue Crabs’ director of media relations and broadcasting.
The Blue Crabs take the field at Regency Furniture Stadium, located in Waldorf - St. Charles just south of Billingsley Road. The team plays in The Atlantic League of Professional Baseball.
“This independent league concentrates on signing veterans who have played professionally six or more years,” he says. “The Atlantic League is the most advanced of the independent leagues.”
The team’s success and the ballpark’s draw has even created a fan club.
According to Braverman, Blue Crabs fans have been dubbed Crustacean Nation, and “once you enter the gates, you’re a member.”
And the Crustacean Nation members show up. Game attendance averages between 3,500 and 4,000, but more than 7,000 fans show up for opening day.
“The way we approach our business, as far as promotions and getting fans in the ballpark to have a good time, we’re no different than any team in affiliated baseball,” he says. “The reputation of The Atlantic League and independent baseball in general continues to get better and better.”
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