CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. - The Chattanooga Lookouts are pleased to announce that the organization has signed a two-year player development contract with the Cincinnati Reds. The Reds have a long and storied history in Chattanooga that includes winning a Southern League Title in 1988. The two teams previously had a 21-year affiliation spanning from 1988-2008.
"The Reds are thrilled to be returning to the city of Chattanooga and forming a new partnership with the Lookouts, both on and off the field," said Cincinnati Reds President of Baseball Operations Dick Williams. "We are excited to be working with Jason Freier and his partners, the Lookouts' front office, and, most importantly, the fans and the Chattanooga community at large. During our previous stint as partners, we witnessed firsthand that the city of Chattanooga and the Lookouts franchise combine to provide a great springboard to the Major Leagues and we are looking forward to enjoying similar success with a new generation of players and fans."
The previous affiliation between the two teams saw numerous top prospects come to Chattanooga. Prominent Reds players to play in Chattanooga include MLB Hall-of-Famer Trevor Hoffman, NFL Hall-of-Famer Deion Sanders, 2010 NL MVP Joey Votto, New York Yankees Manager Aaron Boone, MLB All-Stars Edwin Encarnacion, Jay Bruce, Adam Dunn, Justin Turner, Johnny Cueto, Homer Bailey, and long-time fan favorite Corky Miler.
"We are thrilled to have the Reds back in Chattanooga," said Lookouts Owner Jason Freier. "It's exciting to be reunited with baseball's original franchise. The proximity of our cities is a great benefit of our partnership. Reds games are broadcast into the Chattanooga market and Cincinnati is just a drive away, so our fans will be able to follow their Lookouts up to the big leagues."
The Reds currently boast one of the top Minor League Farm Systems in baseball. According to MLB.com the Reds have the 7th best farm system in all of baseball and are the only system that has three of the game's top 20 prospects. The highest ranked player is former Tennessee Volunteer Nick Senzel, who is fourth on the list. The other top 100 players are 2017 second overall draft pick Hunter Greene, Kennesaw, Georgia native Taylor Trammell, and 2018 fifth overall pick Jonathan India.
"The development of homegrown talent will always be at the core of what the Cincinnati Reds do, and Double-A is such an important step in that development process," said Cincinnati Reds Vice President of Player Development Shawn Pender. "We are thrilled that our players will get to take that step in a place like Chattanooga, and are confident that they will represent the city and the franchise well."
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.