Lookout(s) for Minnesota: Twins to Partner with Chattanooga
A Twins minor league team is on the move.
La Velle E. Neal III, Twins beat writer for the Star Tribune, is reporting today that the Minnesota Twins are close to an agreement with the Chattanooga Lookouts of the Southern League to become their new Double-A affiliate. This report comes just three days after it was made public that the Twins had severed their 20 year relationship with the New Britain Rock Cats. At the time of the New Britain announcement, General Manager Terry Ryan stated, “We ended up severing. I’m not going to deny. Yeah, we severed, but that doesn’t mean anything. I wouldn’t read too much into that,” signaling that the move to sever the relationship was more procedural than anything else. New Britain’s status as a Double-A affiliate was in question with the franchise’s rumored and disputed move to Hartford, detailed here.
Apparently there was more to the announcement then met the eye. As of today, it appears that New Britain is out and Chattanooga is in.
The Times Free Press of Chattanooga reported this morning that Twins officials were in Chattanooga to tour AT&T Field, a 6,340 seat downtown stadium that previously was Los Angeles Dodgers’ Double-A affiliate. With the Dodgers moving their affiliation to Tulsa, the Twins appear to have a ready-made partner with Chattanooga. With both Arizona and Colorado looking for a Double A affiliate, moving quickly to lock in Chattanooga appears to be the Twins’ priority. Should the partnership come to fruition, the Twins’ current AA roster and staff will be packing their bags and heading to Tennessee.
Things seem to be moving quickly, so updates will be forthcoming…
UPDATE: The Times Free Press of Chattanooga has reported that a press conference has been scheduled for 1:30pm CT to announce a four year deal between the Minnesota Twins and the Chattanooga Lookouts. Details from that press conference forthcoming…