No, the Mariners will not become nut traders. The team has bought a majority share in the Modesto Nuts baseball club (A Advanced, California League).
In the previous years, the Mariners spent time in Adelanto (High Desert Mavericks) and in Bakersfield (Blaze), the two cities that will be out of affiliated baseball next year.
Both teams had its problems. The Mavericks played at some high altitude that made it impossible to train pitchers. Next to the altitude, the dry desert air also made balls travel farther. The Blaze played in an old stadium that could not meet the standards of today. Especially the sun delay, as the sun set behind the outfield, were a big burden.
Even though details of the deal with the former (majority) owners of the Nuts, HWS Baseball IV, have not been disclosed, several sources claim that the M’s have acquired 51% of the shares. With the acquisition, the Mariners have technically signed a four year PDC through the 2020 season. The former (majority) owner HWS Baseball IV will run the team under terms of the new contract.
HWS Baseball’s Michael Savit said in a press statement.“I think this is a great day for the Nuts, the City of Modesto and all baseball fans in the Stanislaus County area,” “The Mariners are a great organization, and the commitment they are making to the franchise says a great deal about Modesto and its baseball future. We couldn’t be happier about partnering with the Mariners.”
According to Mariners Director of Player Development Andy McKay “The Mariners are committed to a strong minor league system.That commitment, coupled with our desire to remain in the California League and the great opportunity to be affiliated with the Nuts and the city and fans of Modesto, has led us to this partnership. We are looking forward to many, many years of success here in Modesto.”