The pair have been affiliated since since 1994, the first season Colorado had a full allotment of minor league affiliates.
The relationship between the Rockies and the Tourists is the longest between any Major League team and its current affiliate in the South Atlantic League. The relationship is also the longest between the Rockies and any of their minor league affiliates. Asheville is the only full-season Low A affiliate in Colorado franchise history.
“The Colorado Rockies are extremely excited about extending and continuing our partnership with the Asheville Tourists. The commitment both organizations have to each other plays an important role in the development of our players,” said Rockies Senior Director of Player Development Zach Wilson. “We are thankful and honored to be associated with the Tourists and the City of Asheville and look forward to continuing to grow and cultivate our relationship together.”
In recent years, Asheville has featured and assisted in the development of several individual players who currently put on a Rockies jersey night after night. Those players include; Nolan Arenado (2010), Chad Bettis (2010), Cristhian Adames (2011), Tyler Anderson (2012), Trevor Story (2012), Eddie Butler (2013), and Carlos Estevez (2014). Asheville has also been called home by many former Rockies including Darren Holmes (1994), Todd Helton (1995), Matt Holliday (1999), Jeff Francis (2002), and Ubaldo Jimenez (2003) to name a few.
“Extending the affiliation agreement between the Tourists and the Colorado Rockies is another step in enriching the longest tenured partnership in the South Atlantic League,” said Tourists president Brian DeWine. “I am happy and proud to continue the Tourists relationship with the Rockies through the 2018 season.”
We’ve been posting plenty of affiliate news so far this summer, as teams get ready for the end of the season, when new affiliate deals can be negotiated if the old ones end. Most affiliate deals end up renewed. Check out our Affiliate Dance page for the current stage of affiliate deals.