Apr 2, 2024 - Sports

Photos: Top players to suit up for the Bees during their time in Salt Lake

Smith's ball park in Salt Lake City on a sunny day with mountains in the background

Smith's Ballpark where the Bees are playing their final season in 2024. Photo by Daniela Porcelli/Getty Images

The Salt Lake Bees are back at Smith's Ballpark tonight for their home opener. First pitch against the Tacoma Rainiers is at 6:35pm.

State of play: This will be the Bees final season in Salt Lake City's Ballpark neighborhood as they are set to move to Daybreak in South Jordan next year.

Flashback: As the team wraps up its decadeslong run in Salt Lake, we looked at some of the most notable players to spend time with the Triple-A affiliate.

David Ortiz in a Red Sox uniform
David Ortiz #34 of the Boston Red Sox celebrates after scoring in the third inning against the St. Louis Cardinals during Game Six of the 2013 World Series at Fenway Park on October 30, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts.

Before he became a hall of famer and feared slugger for the Boston Red Sox, Big Papi was trying to bust into the league. During the 1999 season he suited up in SLC for the team known then as the Salt Lake Buzz.

  • He finished the season batting .315, with 30 home runs and 110 RBIs. The rest, as they say, is history.
Mike Trout in a Los Angeles Angels uniform
Mike Trout #27 of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim reacts as he runs to first as his walk off home run clears the wall in the ninth inning against the Boston Red Sox at Angel Stadium of Anaheim on July 17, 2015 in Anaheim, California. The Angels won 1-0. (Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images)

In 2012, 20-year-old Mike Trout played just 20 games for the Salt Lake Bees, but impressed enough to get called up to the Los Angeles Angels for good. He finished with a .403 batting average and five triples during his short stint in the city.

  • He's gone on to be a three-time MVP and 11-time All-Star.
Torii Hunter in a Minnesota Twins uniform
Torii Hunter of the Minnesota Twins bats in the game against the Tampa Bay Devil Rays at the Humphrey Metrodome in Minneapolis, Minnesota, on April 13, 2007. The Devil Rays defeated the Twins 4-2. (Photo by Bruce Kluckhohn/MLB Photos via Getty Images)

Torii Hunter spent parts of two seasons (1998 and 2000) playing for the Salt Lake Buzz before his stellar MLB career. During a game in the summer of 2000, Hunter went 4-5 with a grand slam and six RBIs against Edmonton.

  • He would go on to play 12 years with the Twins over two stints, five with the Angels and two with the Detroit Tigers while winning nine Golden Gloves.
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