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WHEREAS, the Commonwealth of Virginia is comprised of nine Minor League Baseball (MiLB) teams, all of which are affiliated with Major League Baseball (MLB); and
WHEREAS, these teams are affiliated with four Minor League Baseball leagues: International (AAA), Eastern (AA), Carolina (A), and Appalachian; and
WHEREAS, the Bristol Pirates, affiliated with the Pittsburgh Pirates, play at DeVault Memorial Stadium; and
WHEREAS, nearly 300 athletes in Virginia have gone through the minor league system to play for a professional ball club, according to Baseball Almanac; and
WHEREAS, baseball is America’s pastime, played and enjoyed throughout the Commonwealth for generations; and
WHEREAS, in 2017, Minor League Baseball attracted 41.8 million fans across America to its ballparks to see the future stars of the sport hone their skills; and
WHEREAS, Minor League Baseball has provided affordable family-friendly entertainment to people of all ages since its founding in 1901; and
WHEREAS, Minor League baseball plays an important role in communities across the Commonwealth; and
WHEREAS, Virginia is for Baseball Lovers;
NOW, THEREFORE, I, Ralph S. Northam, do hereby recognize July 21, 2018, as BRISTOL PIRATES DAY in our COMMONWEALTH OF VIRGINIA, and I call this observance to the attention of all our citizens.