As that date has finally arrived, fans and teams alike are coming together online to safely celebrate their love of the game.
“Opening Day holds an important place in our hearts. It signifies the arrival of spring, the promise of new beginnings, the return of following your favorite team on a long journey filled with twists and turns, and the hope that your team will put together a magical season you will remember forever,” wrote MLB commissioner Rob Manfred in a message shared on social media.
“Today is unlike any Opening Day in Major League Baseball’s long history. We need to call on the optimism that is synonymous with Opening Day and the unflinching determination required to navigate an entire baseball season to help us through the challenging situation currently facing us all,” he added. “We can do this together by following the direction of our public health experts and government officials to collectively address this global pandemic. Baseball will return, just as soon as it’s safe to do.”
“In addition to programming on MLB Network, ESPN2 , and FS1, we have made thousands of games available for free to you through MLB.TV, MLB.com, and MLB’s YouTube accounts. We also are hosting Opening Day at Home, a selection of 30 memorable games, one for each Club, that you can enjoy today across MLB’s digital platforms,” Manfred wrote.
“Throughout our history, baseball has helped us get through difficult times. Baseball will continue to be here for you as we face these challenges together as a community and we look forward to when we can safely get back on the field and hear the words, ‘Play Ball,’ ” he added.
The league also shared an uplifting video, narrated by Los Angeles Angels superstar Mike Trout.
“Every year on opening day we come together to hope, to believe, to be part of a community. Opening Day may be postponed, but unity, hope, and community don’t have to be,” he says in the clip. “This is a team game played by individuals and every one of us has a role to play. Even though we are apart, we can come together.”
Highlighting the fact that “we’re all in this together,” the Baltimore Orioles — who were set to face off against the New York Yankees — noted that while nobody knows for sure when Opening Day will take place this year, baseball will be back.
However — although many were grateful that the league and their teams were doing their part to make sure Opening Day was still special — some couldn’t help but feel disappointed.
“I love that the MLB is trying everything to make #OpeningDayAtHome a positive experience. However,” one fan wrote, alongside a photo of somebody holding a sign that read “I am sad.”
Striking a positive note, another added: “Thanks, @MLB for doing #OpeningDayAtHome. Just missing the sounds of baseball and this is delivering.”
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