MILWAUKEE -- The Brewers and Wisconsin Timber Rattlers on Tuesday struck an agreement that will keep Milwaukee's Class A affiliate close to home into the next decade.
The clubs jointly announced another four-year extension of their existing player development contract, joining them through the 2020 season. The Timber Rattlers play home games about 100 miles north of Miller Park at recently renovated Neuroscience Group Field at Fox Cities Stadium, near Appleton, Wis.
The clubs have already been affiliated for six seasons after striking an original four-year deal in October 2008. It was extended in June 2011 to run through 2016. The Timber Rattlers' proximity to Milwaukee has allowed the Brewers occasionally to send players coming back from injury, including center fielder Carlos Gomez and third baseman Aramis Ramirez, to Appleton for rehab games.
"This long-term relationship continues to show the trust and confidence that we have in working together as we continue to develop future Major League players," Brewers GM Doug Melvin said in a statement Tuesday.
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The Timber Rattlers went 72-67 during the 2014 regular season and qualified for the postseason after clinching a second-half Wild Card berth in the Midwest League's Western Division. It marked Wisconsin's second postseason appearance in the last three years, after winning the Midwest League championship in 2012.
"Our relationship with the entire Brewers organization has been a special one for the Timber Rattlers, for the local business community in the Fox Valley and, most importantly, for our fans," said Timber Rattlers president Rob Zerjav. "The Brewers provided us the team that brought home the first Midwest League championship in Timber Rattlers history and it has been great to see the success of former Rattlers now making an impact at the big league level in Milwaukee. We look forward to many more years of this great partnership both on and off the field."
The Brewers' other affiliates beginning next season are Triple-A Colorado Springs, Double-A Biloxi, Class A Advanced Brevard County, Rookie-level Helena and Rookie-level Arizona.
Adam McCalvy is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Brew Beat, and follow him on Twitter at @AdamMcCalvy. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.