Nationals extend working agreements with four minor league affiliates

The Washington Nationals today announced they have agreed on two-year Player Development Contract extensions (2013-14) with the Syracuse Chiefs of the Triple-A International League, the Harrisburg Senators of the Double-A Eastern League, the Potomac Nationals of the Single-A Carolina League and the Auburn Doubledays of the Short-season Single-A New York-Penn League. Nationals Executive Vice President of Baseball Operations and General Manager Mike Rizzo, Nationals Assistant General Manager and Vice President/Player Development Bob Boone and Director of Player Development Doug Harris made the joint announcement.

“We could not be more pleased to make this commitment,” said Rizzo. “To make this announcement so early in the season speaks to how much we value our relationships and the environments cultivated by the good people in Syracuse, Harrisburg, Potomac and Auburn. We take our affiliate relations very seriously in Washington. They are a vital part of our family and we know that with time, these bonds will only strengthen.”

The Syracuse Chiefs entered the International League in 1885 and have been a continuous member of the IL since 1961. Since becoming the Nationals’ top affiliate in 2009, the Chiefs are 215-212 (.504).

The Harrisburg Senators entered the Eastern League in 1987 and have been an affiliate of the Nationals franchise since signing on with the Montreal Expos in 1991. The Senators have reached the post-season each of the last two seasons and, at 300-268 (.528), are 32 games above .500 the last four seasons.

A Nationals affiliate since 2005, Potomac joined the Carolina League in 1984. Potomac has posted a stellar 368-324 (.532) record beginning in 2007. The P-Nats have reached the playoffs three times in the last four seasons and twice (2008, ‘10) won the Mills Cup, which is awarded annually to the Carolina League champions.

In its first season in Washington’s chain, Auburn went 45-30 (.600) and claimed a Pinckney Division title before losing in the New York-Penn League Championship series.