Everyone knows the tale of the lost treasure of infamous pirate Blackbeard. In fact, hunters continue to seek the legendary riches today centuries after the death of the pirate captain. 

What most don’t know, at least until now, is that one item of that treasure was once recovered. In fact, that one prize has been a hotly contested part of a baseball rivalry for many years. 

It’s known as The Golden Chumbucket.

Being pirates at sea and working up a mighty hunger from robbing and freebooting every ship on the North Carolina coast, the golden bucket was used to chum for fish large enough to feed the hearty crew of Blackbeard’s last ship The Adventure. That is, until Blackbeard met his fate shortly after hiding his treasure.

The Golden Chumbucket was presumed to be lost with the rest of the fortune until it was simultaneously happened upon by two large, adventurous ocean dwellers. They were Finn the Marlin and Sherman J. “Sharky” Sharkington. Despite being two completely different types of very large and athletic fish, Finn and Sharky were great friends, always on the hunt for the adventure of a baseball game or lost ocean treasure buried deep in the sea.

Until they found The Golden Chumbucket.

Perhaps it was a curse laid upon the bucket by Blackbeard himself when the bucket fell overboard or just the divisive allure of gold, but as soon as Finn and Sharky saw the sparkle of The Golden Chumbucket in the sand that day, they became the fiercest of rivals.

The rivalry and back-and-forth stealing of The Golden Chumbucket became so hazardous, the Elders of the Atlantic commanded that Finn and Sharky find a more reasonable way to settle who would keep the treasured vessel.

Begrudgingly, they decided the best way to settle the matter was a game of baseball with their respective teams, and the rivalry for The Golden Chumbucket began. 

Now, each year, as decided by the pair and approved by the Elders of the Atlantic, the winner of the most games between all Coastal Plain League contests played by Finn’s Morehead City Marlins and Sharky’s Wilmington Sharks takes home The Golden Chumbucket.  

Finn has had the upper hand the past two years (including a 12-2 mark in 2019), as he’s taken not only the Golden Chumbucket, but he’s conquered the entire ocean full of challengers from the CPL. The Petitt cup lies in his grasp, and he has no intention of losing it or the Golden Chumbucket any time soon.

“The Marlins and Sharks are excited to take our rivalry to new heights,” Marlins General Manager Ross Combs said. “The Golden Chumbucket embodies what we are – a fun first, family-oriented organization and league with the best summer collegiate baseball competition in the nation. This is a great new tradition that we look forward to continuing for years to come.”

The Golden Chumbucket series begins on Thursday, May 27 at Legion Stadium in Wilmington, and returns to Finn’s home, Big Rock Stadium, on Friday, May 28.

Don’t miss the battle for the Golden Chumbucket all summer long on the Crystal Coast of North Carolina.

Buy your tickets here.