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Buffalo Bisons name Jeff Smolka new head groundskeeper

August 30, 2023

The Buffalo Bisons — Triple-A affiliate of the Toronto Blue Jays — recently hired Jeff Smolka to serve as head groundskeeper.

A native of North Tonawanda, N.Y., Smolka is in his seventh year working in minor league baseball, most recently as a member of the Blue Jays grounds crew at their Florida Operations in Dunedin, Fla.

He joined the Blue Jays in Florida as a groundskeeping intern in 2020 and earned a full-time groundskeeper role in 2022. The Blue Jays promoted Smolka to assistant manager of turfgrass before the 2023 season. He also assisted in the renovation of the fields at their Player Development Complex when he joined the staff in 2020.

Smolka was a member of the Bisons’ grounds crew from 2017-2020 and was a part of the team while Sahlen Field hosted the Blue Jays during the 2020 season.

Smolka is a graduate of SUNY at Cobleskill with a degree in turfgrass management who also worked on the grounds of the Country Club of Buffalo in 2020. His past volunteer work includes at the North Tonawanda National Little League, at the LPGA Pelican Women’s Championship at the Pelican Golf Club in Belleair, Fla., and the American Athletic Conference Baseball Tournament at BayCare Park in Clearwater, Fla.

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