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Smokies, Cubs agree to extension
02/14/2011 4:41 PM ET
The Tennessee Smokies, who have recently graduated Cubs players such as Starlin Castro and Tyler Colvin, will remain an affiliate of Chicago's National League team for at least four more seasons.

On Monday, the Smokies announced they've agreed with the Cubs to extend their Player Development Contract for two years, bringing the partnership through 2014. The teams came together on a four-year PDC before the 2007 season, and that December extended the deal through 2012.

"The past [four] seasons we have seen what a rich baseball tradition the Cubs have brought to East [Tenn.] and we look forward to many more years with them," Smokies general manager Brian Cox said in a press release.

Tennessee is coming off back-to-back division titles and has reached the Southern League playoffs in three of the four years it has been affiliated with the Cubs.

"We are thrilled to build upon our already strong relationship with the Smokies," Cubs vice president of player personnel Oneri Fleita said. "In addition to the superb amenities, the team has provided our coaches and players with a state-of-the-art ballpark."

The Cubs are the Double-A team's fourth parent club since becoming the Tennessee Smokies in 2000, and no other relationship lasted more than two seasons.

"The Cubs' staff, coaches and players love everything the Smokies organization has to offer," said Oneri.



This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.