Iowa Cubs

The Iowa Cubs are a Minor League Baseball team of the Pacific Coast League (PCL) and the Triple-A affiliate of the Chicago Cubs. They are located in Des Moines, Iowa, and play their home games at Principal Park, which opened in 2004. The team was originally known as the Iowa Oaks when it was established as a member of the Triple-A American Association in 1969. The Cubs took on the moniker of their major league affiliate in 1982. They joined the PCL in 1998. Their only league title in franchise history is the 1993 American Association championship.

Iowa Cubs
Founded in 1969
Des Moines, Iowa
Iowa Cubs LogoIowaCubsCap
Team logoCap insignia
CurrentTriple-A (1969–present)
Minor league affiliations
LeaguePacific Coast League (1998–present)
ConferenceAmerican Conference
DivisionNorthern Division
Previous leagues
American Association (1969–1997)
Major league affiliations
CurrentChicago Cubs (1981–present)
PreviousChicago White Sox (1976–1980)
Houston Astros (1975)
Chicago White Sox (1973–1974)
Oakland Athletics (1969–1972)
Minor league titles
League titles (1)1993
Conference titles (1)2004
Division titles (7)
  • 1973
  • 1993
  • 1997
  • 1998
  • 2001
  • 2004
  • 2008
Team data
NicknameIowa Cubs (1982–present)
Previous names
Iowa Oaks (1969–1981)
ColorsBlue, red, white
MascotCubbie Bear
BallparkPrincipal Park (2004–present)
Previous parks
Sec Taylor Stadium (1969–2004)
Raccoon Baseball, Inc.
ManagerMarty Pevey
General ManagerSam Bernabe

Franchise history

Iowa Oaks logo from when team was a White Sox affiliate

Triple-A baseball came to Iowa's capital city in 1969, as the Iowa Oaks of the American Association began play. The Oaks were affiliates of the Oakland Athletics (1969–1972), the Chicago White Sox (1973–1974 and 1976–1980), and the Houston Astros (1975). In 1981, the team affiliated with the Chicago Cubs and, in 1982, adopted the nickname of the parent team, although it is often shortened to "I-Cubs" by fans and media to avoid confusion with the major league team. The team became part of the Pacific Coast League in 1998 after the dissolution of the American Association. The Iowa Cubs are one of only four Triple-A clubs who bear the name of their parent club. Most minor league teams have moved towards a nickname representative of their local community in order to provide consistent marketing regardless of what major league club their PDC is with.

Their home ballpark is Principal Park (formerly Sec Taylor Stadium), located at the confluence of the Des Moines and Raccoon Rivers. The franchise attendance record of 576,310 was set in 2007. As of 2008, the I-Cubs are owned by Raccoon Baseball, Inc., an ownership group led by Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Michael Gartner. Sam Bernabe serves as the team's president and general manager.

The mascot of the Iowa Cubs is "Cubbie Bear," a brown bear, who is often the Iowa Cubs' unofficial ambassador to schools and charitable events throughout central Iowa.[1]

Notable former players/broadcasters

Many future Cubs stars have played in Des Moines before they were called up to Wrigley Field. Some notable I-Cubs alumni include Greg Maddux, Rafael Palmeiro, Mark Grace, Doug Glanville, Joe Carter, Corey Patterson, Carlos Zambrano, Kyle Farnsworth, Kerry Wood, Steve Trachsel, Tuffy Rhodes, Bruce Kimm, Shawon Dunston, Héctor Villanueva, Mark Prior, Sam Fuld, John Grabow, and Rod Beck. Wood and Prior both made rehabilitation starts for the I-Cubs in 2004 and 2005 before returning to the Chicago Cubs' active roster, and many Cubs players such as Derrek Lee, Daryle Ward, Alfonso Soriano, and Ryan Dempster have also made stops in Des Moines for rehab purposes. Even today many Cubs stars such as Kris Bryant, Kyle Schwarber, Anthony Rizzo, and Javier Baez made stops in Iowa. The Iowa Oaks hosted many future Major League Baseball stars such as sluggers Bill McNulty, Harold Baines, Pat Tabler, and 1971 Cy Young and MVP Award winning left-handed pitcher Vida Blue.[2]

Rod Beck gained national attention while pitching for Iowa during his comeback for living in a mobile home behind the team's Sec Taylor Stadium (now Principal Park) in Des Moines. Beck warmly welcomed fans to drop by and visit, use his restroom, and have some Coors Light from his refrigerator.[3]

In 1993, Tuffy Rhodes hit an extra-inning home run to win the American Association championship for the Iowa Cubs. After failing to latch on to a major league team, in 1995, Rhodes went on to a successful career playing in Nippon Professional Baseball in Japan, where he currently is the career NPB home run leader by a non-Japanese player with 430 home runs.[4]

In addition to these players, Mike Quade, a former manager of the Chicago Cubs, managed the Iowa Cubs from 2003 to 2006. Another former Chicago Cubs manager Bruce Kimm is an Iowa native who managed the Iowa Cubs from 2001 to 2002. In 2010, the I-Cubs had one of their best seasons ever with manager Ryne Sandberg named Pacific Coast League 2010 Manager of the Year. Former St. Louis Cardinals manager Tony La Russa managed the Iowa Oaks in 1979 prior to becoming manager for the Chicago White Sox. In May 2014, Manny Ramirez signed a contract as a part-time player/coach for the I-Cubs.

Former Iowa Cubs broadcasters include: Vince Cotroneo (Oakland A's broadcaster) Brett Dolan (Houston Astros broadcaster) Dave Raymond (Houston Astros broadcaster)

Season-by-season record

Triple-A Champions
League Champions
Division Champions
Season League Division Regular season Post-Season Awards
Finish Wins Losses Win% GB
Iowa Oaks
1969 AA - T–4th 62 78 .443 23 Out of playoffs
1970 AA East 2nd 70 68 .507 3 Out of playoffs
1971 AA East 2nd 71 69 .507 13.5 Out of playoffs
1972 AA East 3rd 62 78 .443 21 Out of playoffs
1973 AA East 1st 83 53 .610 - Lost Championship vs. Tulsa Oilers, 3–4
1974 AA East 2nd 74 62 .544 4.5 Out of playoffs
1975 AA East 4th 56 79 .415 20.5 Out of playoffs
1976 AA East 2nd 68 68 .500 10 Out of playoffs
1977 AA East 4th 61 75 .449 15.5 Out of playoffs
1978 AA East 4th 66 70 .485 12.5 Out of playoffs
1979 AA East 3rd 69 67 .507 9 Out of playoffs
1980 AA East 3rd 59 77 .434 16 Out of playoffs
1981 AA East 4th 53 82 .393 19.5 Out of playoffs
Iowa Cubs
1982 AA East T–2nd 73 62 .541 1.5 Out of playoffs
1983 AA East 2nd 71 65 .522 7.5 Lost Semi-Finals vs. Denver Bears, 1–3
1984 AA - 2nd 80 74 .519 11 Lost Semi-Finals vs. Denver Zephyrs, 1–3
1985 AA West 4th 66 75 .468 12.5 Out of playoffs
1986 AA West 2nd 74 68 .521 2 Out of playoffs
1987 AA - 6th 64 74 .464 14 Out of playoffs
1988 AA West 2nd 78 64 .549 3 Out of playoffs
1989 AA West 3rd 62 82 .431 11 Out of playoffs
1990 AA West 2nd 72 74 .493 14 Out of playoffs
1991 AA West 2nd 78 66 .542 1 Out of playoffs
1992 AA West 4th 51 92 .357 22.5 Out of playoffs
1993 AA West 1st 85 59 .590 - Won Championship vs. Nashville Sounds, 4-3 Eduardo Zambrano (AA MVP)
1994 AA - 5th 69 74 .483 17 Out of playoffs
1995 AA - 5th 69 74 .483 18.5 Out of playoffs
1996 AA West 3rd 64 78 .451 14 Out of playoffs
1997 AA West 1st 74 69 .517 - Won Semi-Finals vs. New Orleans Zephyrs, 3–0
Lost Finals vs. Buffalo Bisons, 0–3
1998 PCL American Central 1st 85 59 .590 - Lost Semi-Finals vs. New Orleans Zephyrs, 1–2
1999 PCL American Midwest 4th 65 76 .461 16 Not in playoffs
2000 PCL American Central 4th 57 87 .396 29 Not in playoffs
2001 PCL American Central 1st 83 60 .580 - Lost Semi-Finals vs. New Orleans Zephyrs, 0–3
2002 PCL American Central 3rd 71 73 .493 7 Not in playoffs
2003 PCL American Central 3rd 70 72 .493 3 Not in playoffs
2004 PCL American Central 1st 79 64 .552 - Won Semi-Finals vs. Oklahoma RedHawks, 3–2
Lost Finals vs. Sacramento River Cats, 0–3
2005 PCL American North 4th 64 75 .460 8.5 Out of playoffs
2006 PCL American North T–1st 76 68 .528 - Out of playoffs
2007 PCL American North 2nd 76 65 .549 10 Out of playoffs Geovany Soto (PCL MVP)
2008 PCL American North 1st 83 57 .593 - Lost Semi-Finals vs. Oklahoma RedHawks, 2–3
2009 PCL American North 3rd 72 72 .500 5 Out of playoffs
2010 PCL American North T–1st 82 62 .569 - Out of playoffs
2011 PCL American North 4th 66 77 .462 13.5 Out of playoffs Bryan LaHair (PCL MVP)
2012 PCL American North 4th 53 87 .379 28 Out of playoffs
2013 PCL American North 3rd 65 75 .464 2 Out of Playoffs
2014 PCL American North T–2nd 74 70 .514 2.5 Out of Playoffs
2015 PCL American North T–2nd 80 64 .556 6 Out of Playoffs
2016 PCL American North 3rd 67 76 .469 15 Out of Playoffs
2017 PCL American North 4th 67 72 .482 14 Out of Playoffs
2018 PCL American North 4th 50 88 .362 24 Out of Playoffs
Totals Wins Losses Win % Championships
American Association Regular season 1,984 2,076 .489 1993
Pacific Coast League Regular season 1,422 1,423 .500
Post-season[5] 18 29 .383 1993 AA
All-Time Regular and Post-season Record 3,424 3,528 .493

Current roster

Cubbie Bear
Cubbie Bear, the Iowa Cubs mascot
Iowa Cubs roster
Players Coaches/Other







Injury icon 2.svg 7-day injured list
* On Chicago Cubs 40-man roster
# Rehab assignment
∞ Reserve list
‡ Restricted list
§ Suspended list
† Temporary inactive list
Roster updated April 6, 2019
→ More rosters: MiLB • Pacific Coast League
Chicago Cubs minor league players


  1. ^
  2. ^ Des Moines Register.
  3. ^ Drehs, Wayne. "The place to go where no one knows your name." ESPN. May 16, 2003. Retrieved on March 7, 2009.
  4. ^
  5. ^

External links

Albert Almora

Reinaldo Albert Almora Jr. (born April 16, 1994) is an American professional baseball outfielder for the Chicago Cubs of Major League Baseball (MLB).

Bobby Dickerson

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Brad Mills (manager)

James Bradley Mills (born January 19, 1957) is a former manager of the Houston Astros and a former Major League Baseball (MLB) player. He currently serves as a bench coach for the Cleveland Indians. He is the father of retired professional baseball player Beau Mills.

Calvin Murray

Calvin Murray (born July 30, 1971) is a former baseball player who played outfield in the major leagues from 1999-2004 for the San Francisco Giants, Texas Rangers, and Chicago Cubs. He is a 1989 graduate of Dallas' W. T. White High School. He was drafted by the Cleveland Indians in the first round of the 1989 Major League Baseball Draft, but did not sign, and instead attended the University of Texas. He was the batter facing Randy Johnson when Johnson hit a dove with a fastball in a spring training game in 2001.

He is the younger brother of Kevin Murray, who was a quarterback at Texas A&M University from 1983 to 1986. He is the uncle of 2018 Heisman Trophy winner Kyler Murray.

Craig Lefferts

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Jamie Arnold (baseball)

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Drafted by the Atlanta Braves in the first round of the 1992 MLB amateur draft, Arnold spent seven seasons in the Braves farm system, pitching for the Gulf Coast Braves (1992), Macon Braves (1993), Durham Bulls (1994–1995), Greenville Braves (1995–1998) and Richmond Braves (1998).

Signed as a minor league free agent by the Los Angeles Dodgers after the 1998 season, Arnold made his Major League Baseball debut with the Dodgers on April 20, 1999 against the Braves, working 2 scoreless innings. He pitched 36 games for the Dodgers in 1999, including 3 starts.

He failed to make the Dodgers Opening Day roster in 2000 and spent the first half of the season primarily with the Albuquerque Dukes. On July 26, 2000, the Dodgers traded him (along with Jorge Piedra to the Chicago Cubs for Ismael Valdes. Arnold pitched in 12 games for the Cubs that season, including 4 starts.

Released after the season, he pitched in the minors for two more years, first with the Fresno Grizzlies in the San Francisco Giants system and then with the Florida Marlins Triple-A team, the Calgary Cannons. On May 25, 2002, Arnold threw the first no-hitter in Cannons' history against the Iowa Cubs.

Josh Vitters

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José Guzmán

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List of Chicago Cubs minor league affiliates

The Chicago Cubs farm system consists of nine Minor League Baseball affiliates across the United States and in the Dominican Republic. Five teams are independently owned, while four—two Arizona League Cubs squads and two Dominican Summer League Cubs squads—are owned by the major league club.

The Cubs have been affiliated with the Triple-A Iowa Cubs of the Pacific Coast League since 1981, making it the longest-running active affiliation in the organization among teams not owned by the Cubs. It is also the longest affiliation in the team's history. Their newest affiliates are the Myrtle Beach Pelicans of the Class A-Advanced Carolina League, South Bend Cubs of the Class A Midwest League, and Eugene Emeralds of the Rookie League Northwest League who became Cubs affiliates in 2015.

Geographically, Chicago's closest domestic affiliate is the South Bend Cubs of the Class A Midwest League which is approximately 75 miles (121 km) away. Chicago's furthest domestic affiliate is the Eugene Emeralds of the Rookie Northwest League which is some 1,781 miles (2,866 km) away.

Mike Remlinger

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Pete Mackanin

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Mackanin briefly managed the Pittsburgh Pirates, in 2005. Following the firing of Cincinnati Reds manager Jerry Narron, in 2007, Mackanin (who was the team’s advance scout, at the time) became the acting Reds’ manager, for the duration of that campaign; the Reds then decided to replace Mackanin with Dusty Baker.

Mackanin was the Phillies' bench coach, from 2009 to 2012. After spending the 2013 season as a scout for the New York Yankees, he served as Philadelphia’s third base coach in 2014 and 2015, then became interim manager, following Ryne Sandberg’s resignation. The Phillies later announced that they were removing the "interim" label and Mackanin would serve as the team's manager in 2016. On September 29, 2017, the team announced that Mackanin would not return as the Phillies’ field manager, for the 2018 season.

Phil Stephenson

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Pierce Johnson

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Ricky Nolasco

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Ron Coomer

Ronald Bryan "Ron" Coomer (born November 18, 1966), nicknamed "Coom Dawg", is a former first baseman and third baseman in Major League Baseball and the current color analyst and play-by-play broadcaster for the Chicago Cubs radio on WSCR 670 AM. Coomer had a nine-year major league career from 1995 to 2003 playing for the Minnesota Twins, New York Yankees, Chicago Cubs, and Los Angeles Dodgers. He was elected to the American League All-Star team in 1999 while with the Twins.

During his baseball career he opened up a baseball facility in Orland Park, Illinois, called C.F. Swingtown Baseball Academy, which is no longer owned by Coomer.

Scott Bryant

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Shawon Dunston

Shawon Donnell Dunston (born March 21, 1963) is an American retired professional baseball player. A shortstop, Dunston played in Major League Baseball (MLB) from 1985 through 2002.

Dunston was the first overall pick in the 1982 MLB draft by the Chicago Cubs, and played for the Cubs (1985–95, 1997), San Francisco Giants (1996, 1998, 2001–02), Pittsburgh Pirates (1997), Cleveland Indians (1998), St. Louis Cardinals (1999, 2000) and New York Mets (1999). Dunston was named an All-Star in 1988 and 1990.

Terry Kennedy (baseball)

Terrence Edward Kennedy (born June 4, 1956) is a former All-Star Major League Baseball catcher who played for the St. Louis Cardinals (1978–80), San Diego Padres (1981–86), Baltimore Orioles (1987–88) and San Francisco Giants (1989–91). Kennedy batted left-handed and threw right-handed. He is the son of former major league player and manager Bob Kennedy.

Born in Euclid, Ohio, Kennedy played college baseball at Florida State University and was a two-time All-American and Sporting News College Player of the Year in 1976. Kennedy was inducted into the FSU Athletics hall of Fame in 1982.

In a 14-year major league career, Kennedy hit .264 with 113 home runs and 628 RBI in 1491 games. Kennedy tied Johnny Bench's NL mark of 40 doubles in a season in 1982. That same year Kennedy won the Silver Slugger Award. He appeared in 4 All-Star games (1981, 1983, 1985, and 1987). He also played in two World Series: with the Padres in 1984 and with the Giants in 1989. Terry and his father Bob became the first father and son duo to drive in runs in a World Series when Terry drove in two against the Tigers in 1984 in his first "at bat".

Throughout most of his career, Kennedy wore #16, which he was assigned on his first day in major league camp with the Cardinals. When he came to the Orioles, he could not get #16 because veteran pitcher Scott McGregor already had the number, so he wore #15 during his time with them. He reverted to #16 during his time with the Giants.

After his playing days, Kennedy managed, coached, and instructed in the minor leagues for the St. Louis Cardinals, Montreal Expos, Seattle Mariners, Chicago Cubs, Los Angeles Dodgers and San Diego Padres, as well as the Independent Leagues. Kennedy was voted Manager-of-the-Year twice including Baseball America Manager-of-the-Year in 1998 when he led the Iowa Cubs to a first-place finish.

Terry is a scout with the Chicago Cubs.

Todd Van Poppel

Todd Matthew Van Poppel (born December 9, 1971) is a former Major League Baseball pitcher who played for the Oakland Athletics (1991, 1993-1996), Detroit Tigers (1996), Texas Rangers (1998, 2002-2003), Pittsburgh Pirates (1998), Chicago Cubs (2000-2001), and Cincinnati Reds (2003-2004). He retired during spring training with the New York Mets in 2005.

Key personnel
World Series
championships (3)
National League
championships (17)
Minor league
Sports teams based in Iowa
Roller derby
NCAA Division I


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