Capitol Broadcasting Company Inc. has purchased the Holly Springs Salamanders, a summer collegiate baseball team that plays in the Coastal Plain League. The Salamanders, who were previously owned by Coastal Plain League co-founder Jerry Pettit, join the Durham Bulls as CBC-owned baseball properties.
The franchise, in existence since 2015, plays its home contests at Ting Park in Holly Springs, N.C. The 1,800-seat facility features a synthetic turf field, two locker rooms and digital scoreboard among other amenities, and is owned and operated by the Town of Holly Springs.
The purchase of the Salamanders amplifies CBC's dedication to college baseball, as Durham Bulls Athletic Park is set to host the ACC Baseball Championship for the fourth time in six years in 2018. Additionally, the team is committed to further strengthening its ties with UNC, NC State and Duke to bolster amateur baseball's profile in the Triangle.
"Having met with Capitol Broadcasting Company some time ago, my initial response was this could be a win-win for both Holly Springs and CBC," Holly Springs Mayor Dick Sears said. "Their marketing expertise will be most welcome, and we look forward to a long and successful relationship."
In conjunction with the acquisition, Mike Birling has been promoted to vice president – baseball operations at CBC. Birling joined the Durham Bulls as assistant general manager in 1998, and was promoted to general manager following the 2002 season.
"We're extremely excited about adding the Salamanders to the CBC family," Birling said. "Holly Springs is an area that's shown tremendous growth, and as a company, we look forward to expanding our role in the Triangle community with the Salamanders. Additionally, with the Coastal Plain League's footprint, we're eager to enhance the Holly Springs name on both a local and regional level."
The Coastal Plain League is a collegiate, wood-bat league that features 16 teams across North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia and Georgia. The league boasts notable MLB alumni including Justin Verlander and Brandon Guyer.
The Coastal Plain League is the nation's hottest summer collegiate baseball league. Celebrating its 19th season in 2015, the CPL features 15 teams playing in North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia. The CPL gives college players the chance to refine their skills with the use of wooden bats. Players are housed with local host families for the summer and past experiences have been very positive for both players and hosts. The CPL has had over 1,200 alumni drafted and 79 of those – including 2011 AL MVP and Cy Young winner Justin Verlander – make their Major League debut; while another notable alum - Russell Wilson - won Super Bowl XLVIII. For more information on the Coastal Plain League, please visit the league website at www.coastalplain.com and follow us via Twitter @CPLBaseball.