Albuquerque Isotopes

Albuquerque Isotopes Information

The History of Albuquerque Baseball

The Albuquerque Isotopes are continuing a long tradition of baseball in the Duke City.

Albuquerque baseball began in 1915 and the city has always been supportive of their teams. Even though it's only minor league play, team spirit runs high in the city. The Isotopes baseball team is fairly young, having been founded in 2003.

Why so recently?

Because our previous minor league, The Albuquerque Dukes, were sold to Oregon and renamed the Portland Beavers.
albuquerque dukes, dukes baseball

Making it especially sad is the fact the Dukes were established in 1915 and had been playing for 85 years at their departure.

Click Here For Albuquerque Dukes Memorabilia!

Like the Dukes, the Isotopes are affiliated with the Los Angeles Dodgers (the farm team, so to speak) and are playing in the Pacific Coast league, though this is a recent development. The Isotopes baseball team were affiliated with the Florida Marlins from 2003-2009.

History of the Albuquerque Isotopes

After the Duke’s departure in 2000, Albuquerque was without a baseball team. Then, in 2003 the Calgary Cannons were moved here and renamed the Albuquerque Isotopes. Curious about that story?

Here it is:

The name was inspired by the ever-popular “The Simpsons” TV show. In an episode that really appealed to the people of Albuquerque, Homer Simpson decides to prevent the team from moving to Albuquerque by embarking on a hunger strike (note: the relationship is in the nuclear aspect of Homer’s job and the name Isotopes).

Due to the excitement surrounding this, the Albuquerque Journal/Tribune ran a survey to name the baseball team. According to the results, 67% of the respondents voted for “Isotopes”, and so it was.

isotopes park, isotopes baseball
Isotopes Park

You can even find Homer and Marge sitting at the park, just waiting for you to come have your picture taken with them. I think they like Albuquerque.
Isotopes Park

Albuquerque’s state-of-the-art baseball stadium, which can seat as many as 11,124 baseball fans, is known locally as “The Lab”.


Because Isotopes perform best in lab settings of course!

(Ba-dum kssh!)

Wear Your Spirit & Get Albuquerque Isotopes Gear Here!

The stadium is onsite the previous “Dukes Stadium” (Albuquerque Sports Stadium, which was built in 1972), but was razed and rebuilt when the Isotopes came to town. Isotopes Park is considered the best stadium in New Mexico. Aside from being home to the team, some universities use it for tournaments and practices; the University of New Mexico Lobos being one popular tenant.

Now, maybe you don’t want to try and wrangle your family into seats inside the stadium. No worries! Albuquerque baseball is all about options. Families have flexibility just outside the stadium fences, in the wide space known as the Creamland Berm. A large, grassy area with a decent view of field makes it a popular place for outdoor picnics before, during, and after the game.

There are also other outdoor areas located near the park like McDonald’s Picnic Pavilion. Ozone and Fun Zone also provide extra entertainment for your smaller family members.

isotopes park, albuquerque baseball
Bird's Eye View Of Isotopes Park
Fourth of July Traditions

My sister and I love to take advantage of the 4th of July festivities at the Albuquerque Isotopes stadium. For as long as I can remember, the team has a game right around the 4th of July. There are always extra giveaways and goodies, especially for the kids, like t-shirts, inflatable bats, Frisbees, etc. The kids get a chance to meet the Isotopes baseball mascot (“Orbit”, if you didn’t know) and it’s generally a really fun family atmosphere.

After the game is when the real fun starts. The park takes advantage of the starry, warm New Mexico nights and treats all the spectators, plus a great portion of Albuquerque residents, to a gorgeous fireworks display. There is upbeat music piped over the speakers and a plethora of explosions light up the sky.

The best part is, even if you don’t want to watch the game, if you live close enough you can see the whole spectacle from the comfort of your own yard. It’s a good hour plus of fireworks and by the time the last one has faded from the sky the kids are tired and everyone, weary but happy, heads to their cars.

Albuquerque baseball has changed a lot over the years. One thing that hasn't changed, though, is the focus on family fun and the pride our team and our residents take in being New Mexican.