(Fresno, CA) - This morning, alongside City of Fresno Mayor Jerry Dyer and members of the Fresno City Council, Fresno Grizzlies President Derek Franks formally welcomed and introduced the Colorado Rockies to Fresno. By signing the official Player Development License on February 10, 2021, the Fresno Grizzlies agreed to a
(Fresno, CA) - This morning, alongside City of Fresno Mayor Jerry Dyer and members of the Fresno City Council, Fresno Grizzlies President Derek Franks formally welcomed and introduced the Colorado Rockies to Fresno. By signing the official Player Development License on February 10, 2021, the Fresno Grizzlies agreed to a 10-year partnership with the Colorado Rockies -- officially becoming one of the club’s Single-A Affiliates through 2030.
The Rockies will be the Grizzlies 4th affiliate since the team started in 1998. Over the past decade of baseball in Fresno, Grizzlies affiliates have won the World Series 5 times (San Francisco Giants: 2010, 2012, 2014; Houston Astros: 2017; Washington Nationals: 2019).
City of Fresno Mayor Jerry Dyer addressed the media and fans as he officially welcomed the Colorado Rockies to Fresno and encouraged the community to visit the park when the season opens on May 11, 2021. Encouraging them to support baseball in downtown Fresno and enjoy being outdoors in a safe environment.
“It’s my honor to be here today to welcome the Colorado Rockies to Fresno,” said City of Fresno Mayor Jerry Dyer. “We’re very grateful that they chose us. They chose this park to play in. They chose Fresno to partner with and we’re fortunate to have them in Fresno.”
Dyer added, “We encourage people this year to come out and support our Fresno Grizzlies and support the Colorado Rockies. We know what we have here in this stadium is a gem, it is the best ballpark in the entire nation.”
During the press conference, Franks emphasized his excitement in introducing the Colorado Rockies as a part of the Fresno community, and how the partnership will further the organization's commitment to being the best Single-A affiliate in the country -- offering great baseball, phenomenal fan experiences, and new rivalries.
“This is a very special day for our franchise that we are excited to celebrate with all of you,” said Fresno Grizzlies President Derek Franks at the opening of the press conference.
“We’re focused on the future and being the best Single-A team in the country. In a longer-term partnership under the new modernized system that we’re part of with Major League Baseball, the presence of the Major League brand will be closer to this community. We’re really excited about tapping into the tools, technology, and national partnerships that Major League Baseball can bring to this community that’s ultimately going to help us grow the game of baseball and shine a brighter spotlight on our players, our coaches, on the Rockies, on Fresno and Chukchansi Park.”
Colorado Rockies Farm Director Zach Wilson joined the press conference virtually from Scottsdale, Arizona to discuss the new agreement. On behalf of the Rockies, Wilson explained how impressive the Fresno Grizzlies franchise was to the organization, and why this 10-year commitment to the club and the Central Valley is a great fit.
Wilson pointed out positive outcomes of having a consistent partnership with the Fresno Grizzlies and how that relationship will not only impact what takes place on the field, but off the field as well.
“When we enter into relationships like this, we’ve always looked at them as a partnership,” said Wilson. “Our goal is to bring fantastic baseball to Fresno, and true impact and involvement to the Fresno community. Part of our culture is making sure our players understand the impact they can have not just on the field through performance, doing the right thing, playing hard, and being exciting ballplayers -- but through what they're able to do out in the community. Not only is that an expectation of ours, but it’s a desire of our players.”
The Grizzlies are currently preparing for the 2021 season, and look forward to opening the gates to Chukchansi Park on May 11 when the team welcomes the Visalia Rawhide for their home opener.
ABOUT THE FRESNO GRIZZLIES
The Fresno Grizzlies are the Low-A affiliate of the Colorado Rockies. The team plays at Chukchansi Park in Downtown Fresno, which is also a year-round community venue, hosting a myriad of other special events beyond Grizzlies' games, such as concerts, festivals, high school baseball and over 100 non-profit community events every year. The Grizzlies enter the 2021 season - their 24th year in Fresno - with a new affiliation and classification but with the same family-friendly and entertaining atmosphere fans have come to expect from the team.