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Memphis News & Weather | Memphis, TN | WATN - localmemphis.com

No Opening Night for Memphis Redbirds due to COVID-19

It was supposed to be Opening Night for the Memphis Redbirds against the Omaha Stormchasers. A month ago, the MiLB season was postponed due to COVID-19.

There will be no fireworks, BBQ nachos, or cold beer inside AutoZone Park for what would have been the Memphis Redbirds Opening Night.

March 12th, Minor League Baseball announced the suspension of training and the season in response to the outbreak of COVID-19.

For baseball fans, Opening Day sits high on the list for season favorites.

"To have the day here without sort of all the circumstances that go with it, it's disappointing and it's that sort of right of passage to spring and summer," Craig Unger, Memphis Redbirds President and GM, said. "But in the end, I think the right thing here is let's get the country healthy and all these things will come back in due time."

Rather than preparing the field and players filling the dugouts, the Redbirds will spend the start of the original season by connecting with the fans the only way possible, through social media.

"I miss the excitement that people have. Kids you know coming in and they're bringing their gloves and they've got their jersey on and the whole thing. That's to me what breaks my heart - what we're all dealing with and what role sports plays in that is for people to come together and those smiles," Unger said.

Until baseball can presume again, Unger's message to fans is to be safe and patient.

"Sports will be back. Through the years, sports has always been the great unifier. It has always been that thing that comes through when there's been tragedy in the country, when there's been challenging times," he said. "Sports has been the thing that has always brought people together and it's going to do that again."

Unger said at this point, they can't speculate on when or if the season will happen. The Redbirds were originally scheduled to have 70 games at home in their 23rd season.

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