Sox send invitations to minor league affiliates for 2021 originally appeared on NBC Sports Chicago
The White Sox officially announced that they've invited their four top minor league affiliates to continue to be their affiliates.
As part of the reorganization of the minor leagues, in which teams and entire leagues have changed levels or have been moved out from under the official Minor League Baseball umbrella entirely, major league clubs were required to extend invitations for a Player Development License to minor league clubs they wish to be affiliated with.
While some organizations experienced greater upheaval, the White Sox invited the four teams who have long been their four full-season affiliates: the Triple-A Charlotte Knights, the Double-A Birmingham Barons, the Class A Winston-Salem Dash and the Class A Kannapolis Cannonballers.
According to the team's announcement, "Each club will consider the details of the license invitation before responding to the White Sox and MLB."
"We are extremely fortunate to enjoy strong and productive existing relationships with each of our four affiliates in Charlotte, Birmingham, Winston-Salem and Kannapolis," White Sox player-development director Chris Getz said in the announcement. "Issuing a license invitation to these four outstanding baseball communities is an important first step in Major League Baseball’s process of reshaping the player-development system.
"We have worked closely with MLB on this new structure with minor league affiliates to ensure a successful and sustained partnership and future for all major and minor league clubs, our players and the local communities."
All four minor league clubs have been longtime White Sox affiliates: Charlotte since 1999, Birmingham since 1986, Winston-Salem since 1997 and Kannapolis since 2001.
The White Sox will continue to operate their Rookie-ball club out of their spring training complex in Glendale, Arizona. Earlier this year, the team announced the end of its affiliation with the short-season Great Falls Voyagers in Montana as part of the reorganization of the minors.
According to the announcement, "Further updates about the acceptance of license invitations and finalized details about the new player-development structure will be issued by Major League Baseball in early 2021."