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Diamond Baseball Holdings to Purchase Majority Interest in Worcester Red Sox

Local leaders Ralph Crowley, Larry Lucchino, and Jim Skeffington Jr. to remain part of ownership group; WooSox front office members to continue to operate the club
December 5, 2023

Worcester, MA (December 5, 2023) – Diamond Baseball Holdings (DBH), a company that owns and operates select minor league clubs affiliated with Major League Baseball (MLB), today announced it would purchase the majority of shares of the Worcester Red Sox and retain local leaders Ralph Crowley, Larry Lucchino and Jim

Worcester, MA (December 5, 2023) – Diamond Baseball Holdings (DBH), a company that owns and operates select minor league clubs affiliated with Major League Baseball (MLB), today announced it would purchase the majority of shares of the Worcester Red Sox and retain local leaders Ralph Crowley, Larry Lucchino and Jim Skeffington Jr. in the group.

The WooSox will remain the Triple-A affiliate of the Boston Red Sox and continue to play at Polar Park in Worcester under the continued leadership of Larry Lucchino as Chairman, Dr. Charles Steinberg as President, Dan Rea as General Manager and Executive Vice President of Business and Real Estate, and the current front office staff. Crowley, CEO of Polar Beverages, Polar Park’s naming rights partner, will play an active local role on behalf of the Crowley family and the ownership group.

Following a long history of baseball firsts associated with Worcester – from the first ever perfect game thrown in 1880 to Worcester’s own John Gaffney, “King of Umpires,” who spurred the invention of the pentagon-shaped home plate – the Worcester Red Sox returned affiliated professional baseball to the city in 2021 for the first time since 1925. The WooSox’ home, Polar Park, was voted “Best Ballpark in Triple-A Baseball” in Ballpark Digest in 2023. Activated year-round, Polar Park is an exciting destination for family fun and entertainment in the City of Worcester and throughout Massachusetts and New England.

“At 78, and after 44 years in baseball, I believe it’s time to have a succession plan, one that assures a commitment to baseball and a commitment to Worcester,” said Lucchino, the WooSox Chairman and Principal Owner. “There is no organization more committed to Minor League Baseball than Diamond Baseball Holdings, and we welcome Pat Battle, Peter Freund, and this organization to our city. There is no local business leader more invested in Worcester and in Polar Park than Ralph Crowley, and we are pleased that he is part of the ownership group. Jim Skeffington’s late father and I set out to keep the Boston Red Sox’ Triple-A club in New England, and in good hands, and I trust that Pat and Peter will be excellent stewards.

“I also extend my gratitude to the leaders and all of the people of Worcester. From Mayor Joe Petty to the City Councilors who encouraged us to move here, to Ed Augustus, as talented a City Manager as I have ever worked with, the City of Worcester has been a partner without peer. I have been privileged to work with extraordinary people—in the City, in the Commonwealth, and particularly, in our enormously dedicated front office and event staff. I am proud of what we have accomplished here, and I am grateful to all who have made this enterprise so successful.”

“Spearheaded by Red Sox Hall of Famer Larry Lucchino, who has and will continue to have a massive impact on the baseball world and particularly in this city, the WooSox ownership group is proud of what we’ve set in motion and thrilled to now give DBH the reins,” said Crowley. “Peter, Pat, and the team at DBH are committed to advancing our shared vision of excellent baseball and a standout fan experience for the Worcester community. Larry and I are grateful to the Red Sox organization for the continued partnership and look forward to more Red Sox baseball with DBH.”

“Larry, Ralph, and the rest of the Worcester Red Sox group and staff have been great partners to the Boston Red Sox. It has been wonderful to watch what they’ve created in Worcester through their dedication to the organization and to Minor League Baseball,” said Sam Kennedy, President and CEO of the Boston Red Sox. “We are excited to deepen our connection to the exceptional team at DBH here in Worcester, in addition to their stewardship of our affiliates in Portland and in Salem.”

“We are thrilled to add the WooSox to the DBH family, our third Red Sox affiliate and a transformational Triple-A franchise for both Minor League Baseball and the City of Worcester,” said Pat Battle and Peter Freund, Executive Chairman and CEO of Diamond Baseball Holdings, respectively. “We are beyond excited to partner with Ralph Crowley of Polar Beverages on the purchase of the club and very grateful to Larry Lucchino, Sam Kennedy, and the entire Red Sox organization for entrusting us with this incredible franchise.”

Subject to obtaining the consent of the league and satisfying other standard closing conditions, the transaction is expected to be completed before the end of the year.

About the Worcester Red Sox

Polar Park and the Worcester Red Sox both enjoyed inaugural seasons in 2021. After the season, Minor League Baseball bestowed its top awards for Community Outreach and Latino and Hispanic Outreach to the WooSox. In their second and third seasons, the WooSox led all of Minor League Baseball’s 120 clubs in tickets sold. The WooSox are the only club in Minor League Baseball to have sold more than 500,000 tickets each of the past two years. On Polar Park’s second anniversary, May 11, 2023, Ballpark Digest named Polar Park “Best Ballpark in Triple-A Baseball” in a vote of more than 87,000 fans. The year-round community gathering place has also hosted high school and college football in the fall, high school and college baseball in the spring, and hundreds of community, family, and business events throughout the year, each year.

About Diamond Baseball Holdings

Diamond Baseball Holdings (DBH) was formed in 2021 to support, promote and enhance Minor League Baseball Clubs affiliated with Major League Baseball through professional management, best practices, innovation and investment.

Media Contacts:

Worcester Red Sox

Bill Wanless

[email protected]

Diamond Baseball Holdings

Lauren Flemming

[email protected]