NFL, MLB, CFL stats

Indianapolis Indians Accept PDL Agreement, Remain as Pittsburgh's Triple-A Affiliate

February 12, 2021 - Triple-A East League (AAA East) - Indianapolis Indians News Release

INDIANAPOLIS - The Indianapolis Indians today announced their acceptance of a 10-year Professional Development License (PDL) with Major League Baseball. This agreement extends Indy's Triple-A affiliation with the Pittsburgh Pirates through the 2030 season.

"We look forward to entering a new era of Minor League Baseball and to working directly with Major League Baseball. We are also excited to continue our partnership and Triple-A affiliation with the Pittsburgh Pirates," said Randy Lewandowski, Indianapolis Indians President and General Manager. "From the front office to the players and coaches, it has been a pleasure working with the Pirates organization and we are eager to continue our relationship for the next decade. Our organization and fans have reason for excitement as we usher in the 25th anniversary of Victory Field in 2021."

The Indians are one of 120 teams included in the revamped minor league system. More information on tickets, promotions and the 2021 schedule will be released in the coming weeks.

Commissioner of Baseball Robert D. Manfred, Jr. said: "We are excited to unveil this new model, which not only provides a pipeline to the majors, but continues the minor leagues' tradition of entertaining millions of families in hundreds of communities. In modernizing our minor league system, we prioritized the qualities that make the minor leagues such an integral part of our game while strengthening how we develop professional athletes on and off the field. We look forward to demonstrating the best of our game throughout local communities, supporting all those who are working hard to grow the sport, and sharing unrivaled technology and resources with minor league teams and players."

Since 2005 - the first year of Indy's second stint as Pittsburgh's Triple-A affiliate - the Indians hold a 1,222-1,024 record (.544 win percentage) with six playoff berths and two trips to the Governors' Cup championship. The Indians finished with a winning record in nine of the past 15 seasons, five of which ended with at least a share of the International League West title. Individually, three members of the starting rotation have been named the IL Most Valuable Pitcher (Zach Duke, 2005; Steven Brault, 2017; Mitch Keller, 2019), and many other former Indians like Andrew McCutchen, Neil Walker, Starling Marte, Jameson Taillon and Josh Bell experienced success at Indy before thriving at the major league level.

"The Pirates are proud to continue our longstanding relationship with Indianapolis as our Triple-A affiliate," said Ben Cherington, Pittsburgh Pirates General Manager. "Indianapolis provides our players and staff members with a first-class facility at Victory Field, along with tremendous support from a very passionate fan base. We continue to be grateful to the organization for their partnership as we build a championship-caliber player development system."

In 2019, the Indians went 66-74 and tied for second in the IL West. Keller, who made his MLB debut in 2019 with Pittsburgh, helped lead the team to a franchise record 1,244 strikeouts. Six members of the 2019 Indianapolis team made their major league debuts in 2020 with the Pirates.

2021 will mark the 20th season overall for Indianapolis as Pittsburgh's top affiliate. The Indians were a Pirates affiliate from 1948-51 and earned three playoff berths. Indy won a club record 100 regular-season games in 1948 and secured an American Association title and Junior World Series championship in 1949.

• Discuss this story on the Triple-A East League message board...

Triple-A East League Stories from February 12, 2021

The opinions expressed in this release are those of the organization issuing it, and do not necessarily reflect the thoughts or opinions of OurSports Central or its staff.

Other Recent Indianapolis Indians Stories

Sports Statistics from the Stats Crew
OurSports Central