America’s Greatest Past Time Down Under
One of the my favorite childhood memories was getting checked out of school by my parents and driving three hours to see the home opening game of the Texas Rangers when I was seven. The Rangers played the Boston Red Sox, and won 3-1. This is one of the most exhilarating feelings for a child in the U.S. This year this experience isn’t limited to just U.S. fans.
Opening day goes down under
The 2014 opening day game between the Los Angles Dodgers and the Arizona Diamondbacks will be played at the Sydney Cricket Ground in Sydney, Australia. It will be a two-game series March 22-23. This will mark the first Major League Baseball game in Australia that actually counts.
Although this is the first Major League game that is happening in Australia, it is not the first time opening day has been played out of the U.S. The Major League baseball season has actually opened outside of the U.S. on six other occasions. In 2001 the season opened in San Juan, Puerto Rico; in 1999 the season opened in Monterrey, Mexico; and four times the season has opened in Tokyo, Japan (2000, 2004, 2008 and 2012).
The Los Angeles Dodgers and Arizona Diamondbacks opener will come right at 100 years after the Chicago White Sox and New York Giants had an exhibition game at the same cricket venue. On Jan. 2, 1914, the White Sox beat the Giants 5-4. That game brought out an estimated 10,000 fans.
Major League Baseball Commissioner Bud Selig said in a statement, “The globalization of our game continues to be paramount to Major League Baseball, and Australia is an essential part of our long-term efforts to grow the sport. We look forward to writing an exciting new chapter in international baseball history at the historic Sydney Cricket Ground next March.”
The rest of the Major League season will kick off back home on March 30.
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