San Bernardino, CA - The Inland Empire 66ers and the Los Angeles Angels have agreed to a Player Development Contract through the end of the 2012 baseball season, team officials announced today. The two-year agreement will make the Inland Empire the home of future Halos stars from October 1, 2010 until September 30, 2012.
"We are very proud to be a part of such an outstanding organization with well known management and an excellent record. We know our fans will appreciate this great opportunity," said David Elmore, Owner of the Inland Empire 66ers.
"The Angel organization is excited to begin our relationship with the Inland Empire 66ers,' said Angels Director of Player Development Abe Flores. "They have a first rate ballpark and front office as well as passionate fans that continually support the club. It is our hope to cultivate a relationship with the City of San Bernardino and embrace fans throughout the Inland Empire."
The Angels are the third major league team to be affiliated with the 66ers in the franchise's 24 year history in San Bernardino. Inland Empire has been home for the High-A affiliates of the Seattle Mariners and the Los Angeles Dodgers in the past, earning five California League championships (1995, 1999, 2000, 2003, 2006) and graduating nearly 100 players to the major leagues. Distinguished 66ers alumni include future Hall of Famer Ken Griffey Jr., current Cy Young Award candidate Felix Hernandez, and two of 2010's most electrifying rookies, Kenley Jansen and Carlos Santana.
"We are very excited to be a part of the Angel's affiliation and their strong fan support in the Inland Empire," said Elmore. "The Angels will be a strong marketing partner and we look forward to adopting and expanding their brand and their values."
"The Angels have been one of the most exciting minor league systems in terms of impact players rising to the Majors and style of play on the field through all levels, including High-A," said 66ers Director of Broadcasting Sam Farber. "It's an exciting time to be an Inland Empire fan as we celebrate 25 years of 66ers Baseball with an exciting new major league partner and an opportunity to bring home the franchise's sixth California League Championship."
The Angels are closing in on 50 years of association with the California League. With stops in San Jose, Stockton, Salinas, Redwood, Palm Springs, Lake Elsinore and Rancho Cucamonga, the Halos have had a successful foothold in the California League. The organization has claimed four championships (1962, 1967, 1983, 1996) in its California league tenure.
A formal press conference will be announced in the coming weeks where fans and members of the media can come meet and greet the new partners at the new home of the Angels High-A affiliate in the Inland Empire.
The 66ers 2011 season begins April 7th when they host their archrivals, the Rancho Cucamonga Quakes. For information on 66ers season tickets or to schedule your next fun filled group outing, contact the 66ers front office at (909) 888-9922.
For more information on 66ers baseball, contact Director of Broadcasting Sam Farber at (909)495-7632.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.