Gov. Ned Lamont is urging the commissioner of Major League Baseball to save the Connecticut Tigers, the minor league team that plays in Norwich.
The New York Times reported that 42 teams, including the Connecticut Tigers, could be eliminated in an overhaul of the minor league system.
Lamont sent a letter on Tuesday to Commissioner Robert Manfred Jr. urging him to reconsider the plan.
“Since 1995, Norwich has proudly been home to a minor league baseball team, and its elimination from the city would be devastating to the thousands of baseball fans in the southeastern region of our state who enjoy attending games each season,” Lamont wrote.
The governor called the Connecticut Tigers “a valuable component of our state” that provides families with “an affordable sports and entertainment opportunity within their own local communities.”
The announcement comes after the City of Norwich made an $800,000 investment to upgrade Dodd Stadium, where the team plays.
“The elimination of this team would prevent thousands of fans in this region from attending professional baseball games and enjoying this great American pastime, which many of us have grown up with and valued throughout our lives. As you are fully aware, Connecticut does not host a Major League Baseball team, but supports three franchises in the Northeast. Attending minor league games provides our residents with an easily accessible option that is a short drive from their homes and schools,” Lamont said in a statement.
Earlier this year, the Connecticut Tigers reached out to fans to help choose a new name for the team and it will be revealed Thursday.
The five finalists are Norwich Golden Roses, Norwich Mill Mules, Norwich Narwhals, Norwich Salty Dogs and Norwich Sea Unicorns.