OAKLAND, Calif. - The Oakland Athletics have announced they have added a new minor league affiliate, signing a two-year player development contract with the Beloit (Wisc.) Snappers of the Single-A Midwest League through the 2014 season. In the A's farm system, Beloit will replace Burlington, Iowa, also of the Midwest League.
"We are delighted to welcome Beloit to our minor league system with today's announcement," said A's Vice President and General Manager Billy Beane. "It is an established Single-A market with a strong baseball community and management team. We look forward to a very successful partnership."
Beloit's minor league history dates back to 1982, when it joined the Midwest League as an expansion franchise affiliated with the Milwaukee Brewers. Beloit continued to operate in the Brewers' farm system through 2004, fielding such future Major Leaguers as Ben Sheets, Prince Fielder, Greg Vaughn, Geoff Jenkins and Ron Belliard. In 2005, the Snappers changed affiliation to the Minnesota Twins, a relationship that continued through this past season.
"We are thrilled to begin our new affiliation with the A's", said Dennis Conerton, chairman of the Beloit Professional Baseball Association, which operates the Snappers. "Oakland is a very successful and well respected organization that has developed a progressive system for analyzing player talent. Their record speaks for itself and their farm system is highly regarded among the best in Major League Baseball. They have an experienced player development staff that has been together for a long time comprised of quality individuals who will be a real pleasure to work with."
The Snappers play their home games at 3,501-seat Harry C. Pohlman Field, which first opened in the team's charter 1982 season. The stadium was renovated in 1995.
Besides Beloit, the other Oakland A's minor league affiliates are Triple-A Sacramento (Pacific Coast League), Double-A Midland (Texas League), Single-A Stockton (California League), Short-Season A Vermont (New York-Penn League) and Rookie League Arizona (Arizona League).