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Blue Jays, Double-A Fisher Cats extend deal

New Hampshire to serve as affiliate through 2018

TORONTO -- The Blue Jays have extended their player development contract with Double-A New Hampshire through the 2018 season.

Toronto officially announced the deal on Wednesday morning. The two sides previously had an agreement through 2016, but the latest contract extends that for an additional two years.

The Fisher Cats have been Toronto's Double-A affiliate since 2004. During the past 11 years, New Hampshire has won a pair of Eastern League titles, and 75 former players have gone on to make their Major League debut.

"This is always an easy and enjoyable process when we extend our agreement with the Blue Jays," Fisher Cats owner Art Solomon said. "Toronto is a first-class organization with outstanding people, and they continue to provide our fans with some of the most exciting prospects in the game.

"We look forward to teaming with future Blue Jays to make a positive impact in the community, while providing entertaining action on the field."

The Fisher Cats' relationship with the Blue Jays is the longest in Toronto's Minor League organization for a non-club-owned team. In 2014, seven prospects from New Hampshire made their Major League debuts, including top prospects Aaron Sanchez and Daniel Norris.

"We have truly enjoyed our experience with the Fisher Cats and we are excited to continue our partnership for another two seasons," said Blue Jays director of Minor League operations Charlie Wilson.

"When our players are in New Hampshire, we know that they get to enjoy one of the best facilities in the Minor Leagues, while also playing in front of a dedicated fan base. Just as importantly, we know that the Fisher Cats share our goal of integrating our players into the greater fabric of their community."

Gregor Chisholm is a reporter for Read his blog, North of the Border, and follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB.
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