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09/24/2002 11:06 am ET 
Orioles sign affiliation with Ottawa

The Baltimore Orioles today announced that they have agreed to a two-year working agreement with the Ottawa Lynx to become their AAA affiliate in the International League. The agreement was announced by Joe Foss, Vice Chairman/Chief Operating Officer of the Orioles, and Ray Pecor, principal owner of the Lynx, and covers the 2003-2004 seasons, with a two-year option.

Officials of the Orioles and Ottawa began discussions on an affiliation soon after the International League season ended earlier this month. Last week, the Rochester Red Wings announced their intention to affiliate with the Minnesota Twins, ending a 42-year relationship between the Orioles and Rochester.

"The Orioles organization enjoyed a wonderful 42 years in Rochester, a span that is virtually unprecedented in professional sports," said Foss. "We look forward to a new beginning and a strong partnership with the Lynx. Ray Pecor and his organization have made tremendous strides with, and brought great enthusiasm to, the Ottawa club in the two years they have owned the team. The Orioles are very excited to be entering into a long-term relationship with an owner who has a major commitment to minor league player development."

The Ottawa franchise has been a Montreal Expos farm club since it was founded in 1993. Pecor purchased the Ontario, Canada-based franchise prior to the 2001 season and, in his first season, saw a 52 percent increase in attendance over the 2000 season. This past season, the Lynx averaged more than 3,000 fans for the first time since 1998.

"We are very excited about starting a new relationship with the Baltimore Orioles," said Pecor, who also owns the Vermont Expos of the Class A New York-Penn League. "The Orioles are an organization with a rich history, and we are extremely pleased to be able to have a part in their continuing tradition."

The team nickname and colors will remain the same. The Lynx, selected through a fan contest, is spelled and pronounced the same in both English and French. All of Ottawa's professional sports teams (the Lynx, hockey's Senators, football's Renegades and lacrosse's Rebel) wear red and black.

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