BRIDGEWATER, NJ - The Somerset Patriots officially signed Major League Baseball’s Professional Development License (PDL), formally accepting an invitation from the New York Yankees to become the team’s new Double-A affiliate. The PDL represents a 10-year agreement that guarantees Somerset will operate as the Yankees’ official Double-A affiliate through the 2030 season.
“We have always conducted our business paralleling the values of the New York Yankees,” said Somerset Patriots Chairman Emeritus Steve Kalafer. “We care about winning on and off the field and providing the best for our fans and the community we serve. In welcoming the Yankees, we have agreed to make TD Bank Ballpark the state-of-the-art minor league facility so that every ballplayer that comes through here will be able to reach their maximum potential.”
An invitation from the Yankees to the Somerset Patriots was confirmed in early November and officially extended in early December as a part of Major League Baseball’s plan to restructure the Minor League Baseball system. This came after the expiration of their previous working arrangement, the Professional Baseball Agreement (PBA), in late September of 2020.
All teams that received invitations from respective MLB organizations were given a February 10th deadline to sign the new PDL. Under this new structure, MiLB will be composed of four full-season leagues, consisting of 120 total teams.
The remainder of the Yankees minor league system will feature: Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Railriders (Triple-A), Hudson Valley Renegades (High-A), and the Tampa Tarpons (Low-A).
“We are extremely honored to join the Yankees family,” said Somerset Patriots President/General Manager Patrick McVerry. “We have worked hard as a staff and community for over two decades to receive this opportunity. We are ready to take the experiences that our fans have grown to love and enhance it with the excitement with Yankees Double-A baseball.”
The Somerset Patriots were a founding member and the longest-tenured franchise of the Atlantic League of Professional Baseball. They won a league-best six championships across 22 seasons in the Atlantic League, drawing over 7.5 million fans through the gates at the award-winning TD Bank Ballpark.
The 2021 season will now officially mark the first season in franchise history with a Major League affiliation. Additional information on a schedule, coaching staff, and roster will be made public in the near future.