Kansas City Blizzard
|Name||Kansas City Blizzard
|Previous names||Arizona Cowboys (2012–2024)
|Previous locations||Phoenix, AZ (2012–2024)
|General manager||Jake Rudolph|
|Former||Cowboy Stadium (2012-2024)|
|Division titles||(2) 2020, 2025|
|Playoff appearances||(3) 2019—2020, 2025|
The Kansas City Blizzard are an American professional baseball team based in Kansas City, Missouri. The team competes in the Bull League playing in the Metropolitan League (ML) East division. They play their home games at Blizzard Stadium.
The team formed in 2012 as the Arizona Cowboys, an expansion club, joining what was then the American Eagle League's West division. In 2019, they became the first of the 2012 expansion clubs to reach a League Championship Series, when they were defeated by the St. Petersburg Admirals, the eventual Bull Cup champions.
At the end of 2024, the club relocated to Kansas City and took their current name, realigning into their current division.
The Arizona Cowboys were formed in 2012, when the Bull League expanded from 16 to 20 teams. In their first season, despite having a Rookie of the Year Award winner in right field, Tsuruo Yoshioka, the team failed to impress and slid to a 4th place finish.
Their next six seasons would be spent in the West division basement, with successive 5th place finishes and never mustering better than a .440 win percentage.
In 2019, that all changed almost overnight when, with the help of speedster left fielder Alexis Rosa, acquired in a trade with the Toronto Nomads two years before, and international free agent signing Tak-keung Yang, the Cowboys powered themselves to a late season playoff run that saw them finish 2nd in the West division, surprising the Nevada Speeders and Seattle Salts. Both the Speeders and Salts had been strong all year, but the Cowboys took advantage of September slumps for those powerhouses, and squeaked ahead of Nevada and finished just one game behind the pennant winning Salts, with a franchise-best 92-70 (.568) record.
In their first-ever playoff contest, they went the distance with the Salts, shutting them down 3-2 in the best-of-five Elimination Round, before advancing to meet the St. Petersburg Admirals in the MLCS. The Cowboys managed not to get swept, taking one game but ultimately losing the series 4-1, as the Admirals went on to capture their first Bull Cup championship.
Move to Kansas City
The club moved to Kansas City and became the Blizzard shortly after the arrival of GM Jake Randolph, who was influential in pushing for the move with team ownership. The fans had largely abandoned the club following their 2019-2020 playoff appearances, and management felt a fresh start was needed.
|Kansas City Blizzard General Managers|
|2014–2017||Matt Johnson||130-216, .375||Spent 2017 as Assistant GM|
|2017||Kyle Bullen||0-0, .000||Released before season started|
|2018||Kevin Norris||3-7, .300||Norris was briefly GM during spring and the first week of 2018 before being replaced by assistant GM Chris Meadows|
|2019–2020||Chris Meadows||183–141, .565||Meadows started 2018 off as the assistant GM, but took over when Norris stepped down in May. He brought the Cowboys to their first-ever playoff in 2019. He went on to lead the Cowboys in taking down the West division pennant-winning first place Seattle Salts. The team advanced to the MLCS and fell to the St. Petersburg Admirals who went on to win the Bull Cup. Meadows repeated a playoff run the following season, though this time Nevada ensured a first round exit. After being succeeded by Troy Olsen, Meadows returned to the assistant role.|
|2021–2024||Troy Olsen||160–181, .469||Olsen, an American who was formerly GM of the Denver Danger, retired in July 2024 after three and a half seasons of managing the Cowboys. Under his tutelage, the team never reclaimed the highs seen of the 2019 and 2020 seasons, when they made back-to-back playoff appearances. After his quiet mid-season resignation, Assistant GM Chris Meadows took the reigns again.|
|2024–||Jake Rudolph||—||Rookie GM Rudolph took over from Chris Meadows in the last 2 weeks of the 2024 season.|
- Tsuruo Yoshioka — won the Rookie of the Year Award in 2012
- Tak-keung Yang — won the Rookie of the Year Award in 2018
- Robby McWeeney — 3x All-Star
Awards and other achievements
|Statistic||Single season record||Career record|
|Batting average||Alexis Rosa||.331||2021||Tak-keung Yang||.301|
|On base percentage||Tak-keung Yang||.443||2020||Tak-keung Yang||.426|
|Slugging percentage||Tak-keung Yang||.679||2020||Tak-keung Yang||.669|
|At bats||Alexis Rosa||633||2020||Jorge Velazquez||3,947|
|Runs||Tak-keung Yang||146||2020||Jorge Velazquez||716|
|Hits||Zong-ming Gang||188||2024||Jorge Velazquez||1,067|
|Doubles||Zong-ming Gang||56||2024||Jorge Velazquez||191|
|Triples||Tex Rudman||19||2022||Alexis Rosa||44|
|Home runs||Tak-keung Yang||60||2019||Joe Kueppers||238|
|Runs batted in||Tak-keung Yang||146||2019||Joe Kueppers||678|
|Stolen bases||Alexis Rosa||68||2019||Alexis Rosa||246|
|Earned runs average||Isaiah Strachan||4.37||2024||Robby McWeeney||4.98|
|Wins||Hiroiaki Nakamura||17||2020|| Robby McWeeney
|Losses||Vicente Mendoza||16||2023||George Grease||64|
|Saves||David Johnson||40||2019|| David Johnson
|Games pitched||David Johnson||73||2019||Kyle Hardy||184|
|Games started||Isaiah Strachan||36||2023||Robby McWeeney||153|
|Complete games||Ivan Morillo||9||2019||Isaiah Strachan||17|
|Shutouts||10+ tied||1||—|| Junior Strong
|Innings pitched||Hiroiaki Nakamura||239.0||2020||Isaiah Strachan||998.1|
|Strikeouts||Robby McWeeney||215||2020||Robby McWeeney||931|
|Metropolitan League West division titles|
| Preceded by:
|2020|| Succeeded by:|
|Metropolitan League East division titles|
| Preceded by:
|2025|| Succeeded by:|
Current title holder
Minor League Affiliations
|Kansas City Blizzard Minor League Affiliates|
|AAA||San Antonio Stallions||Cow League||San Antonio, Texas|
|AA||Saginaw Horsemen||Heifer League||Saginaw, Michigan|
|A||Yuma Hedghogs||Calf League||Yuma, Arizona|
|Short Season A||El Paso Cyclones||Texas-Rio Grande League||El Paso, Texas|
|Rookie||Hollywood Cowboys||Florida Rookie League||Hollywood, Florida|
- Arizona Cowboys, History Team Index. BNN. http://bullleague.org/public_html/bull-league/reports/html/history/team_58_index.html.
2020/01/01. Accessed: 7 May 2019.
- Arizona Cowboys: Batting Leaders. Bull News Network. http://bullleague.org/public_html/bull-league/reports/html/history/team_58_batting_leaders.html. Accessed: 28 December 2017.
- Arizona Cowboys: Pitching Leaders. Bull News Network. http://bullleague.org/public_html/bull-league/reports/html/history/team_58_pitching_leaders.html. Accessed: 28 December 2017.