Columbia Fireflies
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Columbia Fireflies
Columbia Fireflies
Founded in 2016
Columbia, South Carolina
Col Fireflies.pngFireflies cap.png
Team logoCap insignia
Minor league affiliations
ClassLow-A (2021-present)
Previous classesClass A (2016-2020)
LeagueLow-A East (2021-present)
DivisionSouth Division
Previous leagues
South Atlantic League (2016-2020)
Major league affiliations
TeamKansas City Royals (2021-present)
Previous teamsNew York Mets (2016-2020)
Team data
  • Columbia Fireflies (2016-present)
  • Savannah Sand Gnats (1996-2015)
  • Savannah Cardinals (1984-1995)
ColorsNavy blue, neon yellow, neon green, silver, white
MascotMason The Firefly (2016-present)
BallparkSegra Park (2016-present)
Hardball Capital LLC
ManagerBrooks Conrad

The Columbia Fireflies are a Minor League Baseball team based in Columbia, South Carolina, and are the Low-A affiliate of the Kansas City Royals of Major League Baseball. Their home stadium is Segra Park. The team was previously known as the Savannah Sand Gnats (1995-2015); they relocated from Savannah, Georgia, after the 2015 season. They are the only professional baseball team in Columbia, and the first since the Capital City Bombers moved to Greenville, South Carolina, after the 2004 season.


Minor league baseball in Columbia dates back to 1982. The Capital City Bombers moved from Columbia, South Carolina, to Greenville, South Carolina, after the 2004 season. The city of Columbia approved plans to build a stadium in 2014, with the goal of attracting a Minor League Baseball team. Spirit Communications, a local telecommunications company, purchased the naming rights for the stadium.[1] In May 2015, the Savannah Sand Gnats of the Class A South Atlantic League, an affiliate of the New York Mets, announced that it would move to Columbia in time for the 2016 season.[2][3]

After receiving over 2,300 submissions in a public contest to name the team, it chose to call itself the "Columbia Fireflies". The name was inspired by the Photinus frontalis in the nearby Congaree National Park which was outlined in an article entitled "Synchronized fireflies putting on show at Congaree National Park" by The State, a local newspaper.[4] Portions of the team's uniforms glow in the dark as a tribute to the team's name.

Columbia earned its first ever victory as the Fireflies on April 9, 2016. In the game, three pitchers (Thomas McIlraith, Alex Palsha, and Johnny Magliozzi) combined to throw a no-hitter in a 9-0 shutout victory over the Charleston RiverDogs. The no-hitter was the Fireflies' third game. In their first ever home game, on April 14, 2016, the Fireflies defeated the Greenville Drive, 4-1, in front of 9,077 people.[5]

In conjunction with Major League Baseball's reconfiguration of the minors in 2021, the Mets discontinued their affiliation with Columbia.[6] On December 9, 2020, Major League Baseball announced that the Fireflies' new parent club would be the Kansas City Royals beginning with the 2021 season and beyond.[7] They were organized into the Low-A East as the Royals' Low-A classification affiliate.[8]



  1. ^ Callahan, Carolyn (December 3, 2014). "Bull Street Ball Park to Be Named `Spirit Communications Park`". WIS. Columbia, South Carolina. Retrieved 2016.
  2. ^ White, Neil (May 21, 2015). "It's Official: Savannah Baseball Team Moving to Columbia". The State. Columbia, SC. Retrieved 2015.
  3. ^ Dial, Steven; Santaella, Tony (March 25, 2015). "Savannah Baseball Team Moving to Columbia". WLTX. Columbia, SC. Retrieved 2015.
  4. ^ Ransdell, Aaron (August 4, 2015). "Columbia Fireflies Named as New Baseball Name". The State. Columbia, South Carolina. Retrieved 2016.
  5. ^ Fitzgerald, Kevin (April 15, 2016). "9,077 See Fireflies Win Spirit Communications Park Opener". Minor League Baseball. Retrieved 2016.
  6. ^ Cooper, J.J. (November 10, 2020). "Binghamton, Brooklyn Survive As Mets Announce Affiliates". Baseball America. Retrieved 2020.
  7. ^ "Columbia Fireflies invited to become Kansas City Royals affiliate". ABC Columbia. 2020-12-09. Retrieved .
  8. ^ Mayo, Jonathan (February 12, 2021). "MLB Announces New Minors Teams, Leagues". Major League Baseball. Retrieved 2021.

External links

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.



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