LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV) - During a press conference on Aug. 10, 2018, the Arkansas Travelers announced that they are extending their contract with the Seattle Mariners.

In 2016, the Travelers announced they were becoming affiliates with the Mariners. Part of the appeal of Little Rock was having the right environment for both fans and players, which helped prospects develop.

Two years the later, the Travs have announced that they will extend their "player development contract" with Seattle through 2020.

Despite Arkansas' distance from Seattle, the Mariners’ General Manager Jerry Dipoto said he sees the Travelers as a vital part of the Mariners’ organization.

“In Little Rock, we do have access and that accessibility is really important to us,” Dipoto said. “And more importantly, we have the comfort of working with people we trust in a city we trust in a ballpark that suits us. And we love the league and the situation, so really, it couldn't be any better.”

Before this renewal, the current deal with the Mariners was set to expire at the end of this season.

Since being part of the organization, the Travelers have sent five players directly to Seattle and have hosted 10 Mariners on rehab assignments.