Rancho Cucamonga Quakes
- Location: Rancho Cucamonga, CA
- League: California League 1993-2019; Low-A West 2021; California League 2022-
- Affiliation: San Diego Padres 1993-2000; Los Angeles Angels 2001-2010; Los Angeles Dodgers 2011-present
- Ballpark: LoanMart Field (1993-present)
The Rancho Cucamonga Quakes, of the California League and briefly in Low-A West, became a minor league fixture inside Los Angeles MLB protected territory long before actually joining an LA farm system. The Los Angeles Dodgers farmhands play their home games at LoanMart Field in Rancho Cucamonga, CA.
The California League had played only two seasons when World War II stopped most of Organized Baseball. The circuit had begun with four teams in 1942 but resumed play in 1946 with eight. One of the newbies, the Visalia Cubs, played in the Gateway to the Sequoias for 17 years, then moved west to Salinas, CA. After the 1964 season, the Modesto Colts folded; to balance the league, the Reno Silver Sox sat out 1965. The Salinas franchise complicated things by folding after that season - just its third there. The league moved to avoid falling back to four teams by reactivating Reno, reviving Modesto and selling the Salinas franchise to a group from Lodi, CA, for just $2,500.
The franchise's resulting move north led to another period of stability - 19 seasons starting and ending as the Lodi Crushers but with several other nicknames along the way. In 1984, they joined the Chicago Cubs - but lost them the very next year when Chicago consolidated its farm clubs east of the Mississippi River. "Inactive" in 1985, the franchise was then sold and moved to Ventura County, CA.
The move to Southern California was initially unsuccessful. Unable to get a suitable stadium, the club played 1986 at a college ballpark when an ownership group that included actor Mark Harmon bought and moved it, becoming the San Bernardino Spirit in 1987. When the Spirit franchise moved to Rancho to become the Quakes, none other than the Salinas Spurs stepped into the Berdoo and took over the Spirit brand.
The Quakes began play as such in 1993 following the county's decision to build a new ballpark - originally called The Epicenter - lured the club over to Rancho from the Berdoo. Its affiliation switched from the Seattle Mariners to the San Diego Padres. The Quakes moved under the Anaheim Angels in 2001 and finally joined the Dodgers in 2011.
The Quakes' early years in their then state-of-the-art (for the minors) stadium fostered impressive attendance. Barely halfway into their debut campaign, they smashed their circuit's seasonal attendance record just a year after it had been set - ultimately raising it from 218,444 to 331,005. In 1995, the Quakes began a run of three straight seasons above 400,000 - dizzying heights against previous Cali attendance. The 7,099 reported at one 1995 game will likely never be matched or broken, as later renovations reduced the ballpark's fan capacity.
The Quakes play Copa de la Diversión Hispanic engagement campaign games as Temblores de Rancho Cucamonga (Rancho Cucamonga Tremors - as in seismic tremors).