Colorado Rockies: Hartford Yard Goats win Team Of The Year award

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DENVER, CO - JUNE 11: The ball lies on the grass as the Atlanta Braves face the Colorado Rockies at Coors Field on June 11, 2014 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)
DENVER, CO - JUNE 11: The ball lies on the grass as the Atlanta Braves face the Colorado Rockies at Coors Field on June 11, 2014 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images) /
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The Hartford Yard Goats, the AA affiliate of the Colorado Rockies, recently were named the 2017 team of the year by Ballpark Digest. The award is presented to the team that “makes the biggest mark on the industry with improved operations, increased attendance, and noticeable buzz.”

The award was bestowed upon the Yard Goats as a result of the tremendous attendance that they were able to draw on a nightly basis. From the cold days of April all the way through Labor Day, the stands at Dunkin Donuts Park in Hartford were packed. In their first season in the park, the Yard Goats not only made an impact on the local community, but the fans made their presence felt throughout the Eastern League.

Out of 70 home games this past season, 41 of them were sellouts, including the last 21 games of the season. In total, 395,196 fans came through the gates over the course of the season,  an average of more than 5,600 fans per game.

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The attendance set a Connecticut state record for the largest yearly attendance for any professional baseball team in the history of the state. Unfortunately, the season didn’t go as planned for the Yard Goats, as they failed to make the playoffs and finished with a below .500 record.

However, the team created some exciting moments over the course of the season and plenty of talented players saw time in Hartford this season. That includes Ryan McMahon, who stormed his way from Double-A to his Major League debut with the Rockies this season. Nonetheless, it is impressive to see the attendance the team was able to draw en route to a losing season.

Next: Why this writer is a big fan of Ryan McMahon

The team of the year award is not the only award won by the Yard Goats this season. Earlier this year, the Yard Goats were named the Best AA Ballpark by Ballpark Digest. If you haven’t had the chance to watch a game in Hartford yet, consider making a trip in 2018!

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