Fort Bend County residents may soon be able to see the Houston Astros’ stars of tomorrow at Constellation Field.
According to a Monday night tweet from Mark Berman of KRIV Fox 26 News, the Astros have entered into an agreement with the Sugar Land Skeeters to make the Skeeters the organization’s top minor league affiliate beginning next season. The Astros would also have an ownership stake in the Skeeters, according to Berman.
When reached by phone Monday night, Skeeters team president Christopher Hill declined to comment.
Sugar Land has played in the independent Atlantic League since the team’s inception in 2012, winning league titles in 2016 and 2018. The Skeeters also reached the championship series in 2014 and 2019.
If the deal is completed as reported, the Skeeters would replace the Round Rock Express as the Astros’ Triple-A affiliate. The Astros’ other affiliates are the Corpus Christi Hooks (Double-A), Fayetteville Woodpeckers (Class-A Advanced), Quad Cities River Bandits (Class A), Tri-City ValleyCats and Gulf Coast League Astros.
The reported move comes amidst a changing landscape in minor league baseball, with MLB-affiliated leagues cancelling their 2020 season because of the COVID-19 pandemic and many MLB teams expected to streamline their farm systems heading into the 2021 season. The Skeeters broke from the Atlantic League this year to host their own four-team league at Constellation Field.