PRESS RELEASE – The Double-A New Britain Rock Cats Baseball Club (Eastern League) and the Minnesota Twins have extended their Player Development Contract (PDC) for another two years. This long lasting relationship will keep the Rock Cats and Twins together through 2014, their 20th season.
The Rock Cats have been developing players for the Minnesota Twins since 1995, the fifth longest continuous working relationship with a major league affiliate in the Eastern League. “The Twins are an outstanding partner and a true pleasure to work with. They consistently provide talented players, and individuals of great character who believe in serving our community,” Rock Cats President John Willi said.
Since the affiliate began, the Rock Cats have produced two American League Most Valuable Players (Justin Morneau 2006 & Joe Mauer 2009), a three-time A.L. batting champion (Mauer), a single season A.L. home run and RBI leader (David Ortiz), two ALCS MVP’s (Ortiz) and RHP Matt Garza along with twelve Major League All-Stars over an eighteen year period. In addition, 148 players have gone from the Rock Cats to the Major Leagues, including two from the 2012 club.
“The Twins are pleased to extend our agreement with the Rock Cats through 2014. We enjoyed our past relationships with owners Joe Buzas and Bill Dowling and very much look forward to working with the new ownership group led by Josh Solomon. It’s greatly appreciated how supportive the fans have been over the past eighteen years throughout Connecticut and the surrounding communities,” Twins’ Senior Director of Minor League Operations, Jim Rantz said.
“The Minnesota Twins are a first class organization and one our franchise is proud to be associated with. Rock Cats fans can continue to look forward to seeing the best of baseball’s young talent,” Rock Cats owner Josh Solomon said.
Currently, 17 players on the Minnesota Twins 25 man active Major League Roster have played for the Rock Cats. The Twins were named Organization of the Year in 2002 and 2004 by Baseball America and Joe Mauer was named Minor League Player of the Year with the Rock Cats in 2003 (Baseball America). The Rock Cats were named Co-Champions in the Eastern League in 2001 and chosen Double-A Team of the Year by Baseball America.