Sydney Blues

From BR Bullpen

The Sydney Blues played six seasons in the Australian Baseball League. The Blues replaced the Parramatta Patriots as the second team in Sydney, New South Wales for the 1991-1992 ABL season. They finished a miserable last at 13-32 under manager Doug Ault. Things improved when the other Sydney club folded, leaving them alone in the city. They went 25-19 in 1992-1993 with Ault at the helm, finishing third in the league, earning Ault the All-Star manager slot. Mark Shipley, brother of Craig Shipley, won the Gold Glove Award as the league's top fielder.

In 1993-1994, Sydney tied the Perth Heat for first in the ABL at 35-19, though they had a better winning percentage. They fell in the finals to the Brisbane Bandits. The Blues were led by Pitcher of the Year Brad Cornett (10-4, 2.45), the ERA and win leader, and All-Star 3B Brendan Kingman, the leader in home runs (17).

Under new manager Rocket Wheeler, the Blues fell to a tie for third with the East Coast Cougars at 34-27 in 1994-1995. They had All-Stars in 2B Scott Tunkin (.343/.447/.691) and OF Lonell Roberts (33 SB). In 1995-1996, Sydney placed second at 28-19 and then went 4-1 in the postseason to win their only pennant. Manager of the Year Darren Balsley was joined on the All-Star team by MVP and finals MVP Gary White, the top catcher in the circuit. White slugged .805, second in the league, and tied for the most RBI (49).

In the 1996-1997 Australian Baseball League, the Blues were 4th at 32-27 under Paul Elliott. Shipley won another Gold Glove and White (.358, .618 SLG) and Kingman (now an outfielder) were first team All-Stars. Kingman led the league with 21 home runs and a .716 slugging percentage and was second with 62 RBI. They were renamed the Sydney Storm after that.

Source: Flintoff & Dunn Australian Baseball Almanac