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Rockies moving Triple-A, Double-A affiliates

DENVER -- The Rockies announced changes in affiliates on Wednesday, shifting their Triple-A affiliate to Albuquerque and moving their Double-A affiliate to New Britain, Conn.

The Albuquerque Isotopes were affiliated with the Dodgers, who on Wednesday purchased the Oklahoma City franchise as their Triple-A affiliate.

Although the Rockies have spent 22 years in Colorado Springs, they have some history in Albuquerque. They played exhibitions at 11,124-seat Isotopes Park before the 2005 and '06 seasons. Rockies officials like the stadium, which opened in '03, and through negotiations have developed a working relationship with the franchise operators -- among them managing partner Ken Young and general manager John Traub.

Colorado Springs was convenient, at a little more than an hour from Denver, but Albuquerque is only an hour and a half away by plane.

The Double-A affiliation began to change Wednesday, when the Tulsa Drillers, who made the Texas League Championship Series as a Rockies affiliate before losing to Midland, announced a two-year player development contract with the Dodgers. The Dodgers left Chattanooga. The Twins, who previously had their Double-A franchise in New Britain, reached an agreement to move to Chattanooga.

It's not the first time the Rockies have been affiliated with a Connecticut team at Double-A. New Haven was the team's farm club from 1994-98.

Thomas Harding is a reporter for Read his blog, Hardball in the Rockies, and follow him on Twitter @harding_at_mlb.
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