Today, the Phillies announced that the Lehigh Valley IronPigs, Reading Fightin Phils, Jersey Shore BlueClaws and Clearwater Threshers have been invited to become the Club’s four affiliates in MLB’s new player development structure, beginning in 2021.
Lehigh Valley will continue its role as the Phillies’ triple-A affiliate, a spot it has held since 2008. Reading, the longest-tenured affiliate of the Phillies, who has served as the double-A team since 1967, will enter its 55th year as a Phillies affiliate in 2021. The recently renamed Jersey Shore BlueClaws, a Phillies affiliate since 2001, will enter the upcoming year as the Club’s high-A affiliate for the first time. Finally, Clearwater, a Phillies affiliate since 1985, which also has been home to Phillies’ Spring Training since 1947, will shift to low-A.
“We are happy to extend an invitation to these four affiliates who have each been a great partner to this organization for many years,” said Phillies Assistant General Manager Bryan Minniti. “We look forward to continuing our relationship with all four affiliates and their respective communities where we have such long-standing ties.”
In total, the four minor league clubs have 123 combined years as Phillies minor league affiliates.