The Pittsburgh Pirates and Altoona Curve (Class AA; Eastern League) announced an extension in their Player Development Contract through the 2014 season. The announcement was made by Curve General Manager Rob Egan at a press conference at Blair County Ballpark on May 23.The Pittsburgh Pirates and Altoona Curve (Class AA; Eastern League) announced an extension in their Player Development Contract through the 2014 season. The announcement was made by Curve General Manager Rob Egan at a press conference at Blair County Ballpark on May 23.
The agreement is for a four-year extension to the club’s current affiliation with the Pirates that was set to expire at the conclusion of the 2010 season.
"The Altoona Curve and Pittsburgh Pirates have forged one of the strongest bonds that a major league team and a minor league affiliate can have and that very few organizations are able to enjoy," Egan said. "The primary reason the Curve and Pirates have had such a strong bond is because both parties have done right by one another for the first 11 years. It’s extremely exciting to know that this partnership will continue for at least the next five seasons."
Since their inception in 1999, the Curve have been affiliated with no other major league team. The new extension will ensure that affiliation through the franchise’s first 16 years of existence.
"The Pittsburgh Pirates have a long and proud history of building championship clubs from the players developed at our minor league affiliates. Our affiliations with strong and vibrant minor league organizations like the Altoona Curve are critical to our plan to again win championships in Pittsburgh," said Pirates President Frank Coonelly who was present at the announcement. "We are extremely fortunate to have such respected and knowledgeable baseball people in the Lozinak family steering this great franchise. The Pirates are very happy to be associated with such a fine baseball family and look forward to continuing what has been an incredibly productive relationship with the Curve and the entire Altoona community."
The strong partnership between the Pittsburgh Pirates and Altoona Curve started on September 15, 1998 when the visionary for the team, owner Bob Lozinak, was able to secure the initial affiliation with Pirates’ management.
Currently, the Altoona Curve have seen 75 total players reach the major leagues during the team’s first decade, many of whom have gone on to play for the Pittsburgh Pirates. On the current Pirates roster, 11 of the 25 active players are Altoona Curve alumni. Additionally, three players on the Pirates’ 40-man roster are on the current Altoona Curve roster.