Brevard’s Adult Baseball Legacy Owes Debt To Troy Cox
By Jeff Navin // March 26, 2013
Legendary Organizer Creates Championship Team
BREVARD COUNTY • PALM BAY, FLORIDA – Troy Cox wasn’t ready to give up playing baseball, even if he was no longer was a child. He figured there were others just like him.
The former Eau Gallie High third baseman, who graduated from the school in 1973, wasn’t wrong.
That’s how the Palm Bay-Space Coast Amateur Baseball League got started just before the start of summer in 1980.
Now, it’s called the Brevard County Baseball League.
While creating the league, Cox, who will be enshrined in the Space Coast Sports Hall of Fame in May, also created the Americans Baseball Club.
That team, which was the Palm Bay Suds for its first five years, has been a fixture in the league since its inception.
The team eventually became the Palm Bay Americans and now is the Americans Baseball Club.
The league also offers the Fall Wood Bat Division and the Spring Wood Bat Division.
The Roy Hobbs Division has been a fixture since the 1994 season.
As the Americans got older, they moved into this division. Connie Mack (18 and younger) and Mickey Mantle (16 and younger) leagues also have been offered.
So, if someone is playing adult baseball on the Space Coast, they have Troy Cox to thank.
“This isn’t a challenge (organizing the leagues),” said Cox, who received an associate’s degree from South Georgia College in 1975 and his bachelor’s degree from Rollins College in 1997. “It’s fun for me – it’s like breathing for me. I’m not in it for the accolades. I’ve been lucky in doing the things that I like to do.”
As the Recreation Coordinator for Brevard County Parks and Recreation, Cox also organizes various leagues for softball, kickball and soccer.
Each fall, the Americans try to peak for the Roy Hobbs World Series, which is played in Fort Myers. Last year, they won World Series titles in the 38 and older division and the 48 and older division. They were third in the 55 and older division.
In 33 consecutive years of competing in the competition, the Americans have won eight Roy Hobbs World Series Championships and have been the Roys Hobbs World Series runner-up on six occasions. From 1989 to 1994, the Americans’ 30 and older team was called the Space Coast Yankees.
The Americans also have won two international championships, three national runner-up titles, five Southeast USA Championships, two Florida State Championships, three Florida State runner-up titles, six Central Florida Championships and 39 Florida Space Coast Championships.
Cox, who turned 57 last July, also is proud of his role in organizing the Superstars competition, which was a popular sports competition in Brevard County from 1979 until the mid-1990s.
Some of the events in the Superstars included weight lifting one’s body weight, shooting free throws, the 100-yard dash, a one-mile run for men and 880 yards for women, cycling three miles, swimming 50 yards, canoeing a buoy course on a lake at Veterans Memorial Park in Palm Bay, the long jump, bowling a three-game series, double-elimination raquetball, tennis, ping pong, a mandatory obstacle run, nearest-to-the-pin in golf, punt, pass and kick, a softball target throw and hitting off of a tee.
“The Superstars was a lot of fun,” Cox said. “People still come up to me today and talk about it. That was the motto for us – fun, fitness and friendship.”
In the 1980s, Cox also helped develop the Florida Flag Football League.