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Rochester Red Wings to lose Minnesota Twins affiliation

After 17 seasons, it appears the Minnesota Twins will no longer be the Triple-A parent club for the Rochester Red Wings.

A statement was released by the Red Wings on Tuesday night saying the team was informed by the Twins that their “long-term affiliation has most likely come to an end.”  The Twins and Red Wings became affiliated in September 2002 and were together for 17 seasons. They were slated to be partners in 2020 but the season was canceled due to the pandemic.

The Red Wings said they hope to hear from Major League Baseball regarding a new affiliate at some point in the next few weeks.

“Our relationship with the Twins has been a good one. Dave St. Peter (Twins President/ CEO), in his call to inform me, stressed the deep appreciation the Twins have had for our relationship, and gratitude for our partnership. We will always have fond memories of our time spent as a Twins affiliate, but it’s exciting to contemplate the future in this new era of Red Wings Baseball,” said Red Wings President/CEO/COO Naomi Silver.

The Red Wings note that they made the postseason two times during the Twins era. In 2006, manager Stan Cliburn led the Red Wings to the Governors’ Cup Finals before losing the series 3-2 to the Toledo Mud Hens. In 2013, the Red Wings, led by manager Gene Glynn, captured a playoff spot on the last day of the regular season before losing the semifinal series 3-2 to Pawtucket.

The story broke Tuesday in TheStar Tribune, which noted that as part of a complete restructuring of the relationship between MLB and minor league baseball, major league affiliates will be reduced to 120 teams, with short-season leagues being eliminated.

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The newspaper said that major league teams are using the reorganization to line up more geographically friendly affiliates with the report stating that the Twins are interested in an affiliation with the St. Paul Saints.

Randy Gorbman is WXXI's director of news and public affairs. Randy manages the day-to-day operations of WXXI News on radio, television, and online.