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Neutral Site Games Newsbeat

Tuesday, May 21, 2019

APNewsBreak: Yanks, Red Sox play on artificial turf London

The traditional rivalry between the New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox will take a radical twist when they meet in London next month: They will play on artificial turf for the first time in more than 2,200 games over a century.

Major League Baseball has access to Olympic Stadium for 21 days before the games on June 29 and 30, the sport’s first regular-season contests in Europe, and just five days after to clear out. The league concluded there was not enough time to install real grass.

Starting June 6, gravel will be placed over the covering protecting West Ham’s grass soccer pitch and the running track that is a legacy from the 2012 Olympics . The artificial turf baseball field, similar to modern surfaces used by a few big league clubs, will be installed atop that.

“It’s the first Yankees-Red Sox game out of the country, so why not a lot of firsts?” New York pitcher CC Sabathia said. “I think it will be fine.”

Wonder what Tug McGraw would have thought of this….

QLE Posted: May 21, 2019 at 04:28 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: artificial turf, london, neutral site games, red sox, yankees

Friday, May 17, 2019

The Cubs and Cardinals are reportedly set to play in London next year

Back in February, the rumor started floating around that the Cubs and Cardinals could be one of the rivalries to head to London in 2020 for a series.

That appears to now be a reality, as USA TODAY’s Bob Nightengale reported Thursday evening:

....

The Yankees and Red Sox are set to play in London this summer (June 29-30).

No word yet on which team — the Cubs or Cardinals — would be the “home” team in London or who would lose a series at their home ballpark.

Wait- I thought the point of these games was to increase the popularity of baseball in Europe, not damage the sport.

 

QLE Posted: May 17, 2019 at 04:00 AM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: cardinals, cubs, london, neutral site games

Sunday, May 05, 2019

Two MLB pitchers make history in same game by pitching in four countries

When Trevor Cahill took the mound for the Los Angeles Angels on Saturday against the Houston Astros, he made baseball history. Because the game was played in Mexico, Cahill became the first pitcher to pitch in four different countries: the United States, Mexico, Canada and Australia.

But that’s not all: In the bottom of the first, when Astros starter Wade Miley toed the slab, he became the second pitcher to achieve the same feat.

In a strange twist, Cahill and Miley were teammates on the Arizona Diamondbacks in 2014 when they traveled to Australia to open the season against the Los Angeles Dodgers. They started two games Down Under, and on Saturday faced each other on foreign soil once again.

One of the consequences of the rise of the promotional neutral-site game over the last twenty years- and one that will only be more visible the more they schedule games overseas.

 

QLE Posted: May 05, 2019 at 03:44 AM | 20 comment(s)
  Beats: neutral site games, trevor cahill, wade miley

Sunday, April 14, 2019

Dietrich, Reds beat Wainwright, Cardinals 5-2 in Mexico

MONTERREY, Mexico (AP) — There were fireworks this time, too, after Derek Dietrich homered.

Fortunately for Dietrich and the Cincinnati Reds, it was all in good fun.

Dietrich hit a tiebreaking homer off Adam Wainwright in the seventh inning and added a two-run triple as the Reds won their fourth in a row, beating the St. Louis Cardinals 5-2 Saturday night.

The start of the two-game series marked the first time either team had played in the regular season in Mexico. A raucous crowd of 16,886 fans gathered at Estadio de Beisbol de Monterrey and turned the game into a fiesta that lasted for more than three hours and ended with fireworks.

QLE Posted: April 14, 2019 at 07:10 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: derek dietrich, mexico, neutral site games

Saturday, April 13, 2019

LEADING OFF: Cards-Reds in Mexico, suspended Archer starts

MEXICAN MATCHUP

Major League Baseball returns to Estadio de Béisbol de Monterrey when the St. Louis Cardinals and Cincinnati Reds begin a two-game series. Adam Wainwright starts for the Cards against Tanner Roark.

The Astros and Angels play a two-game series at the same park in early May.

MLB began holding regular season games in Mexico in 1996, and the 1999 season opened with a matchup in Monterrey between the Padres and Colorado. Last May, the Padres and Los Angeles Dodgers played a three-game series at the stadium — Walker Buehler and the Dodgers bullpen combined for a no-hitter.

Ahh, the joys of neutral-site games….

 

 

QLE Posted: April 13, 2019 at 07:02 AM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: cardinals, mexico, neutral site games, reds

Thursday, March 21, 2019

Mariners beat A’s 9-7 with help from homers, a bat flip, and endless love for Ichiro

The first pitch of the 2019 MLB season was thrown at 5:36 a.m. Eastern Daylight Time, or 6:36 p.m. local time in Tokyo. Ladies and gentlemen, we have baseball.

There were a lot more 2019 firsts on the way to the Seattle Mariners’ 9-7 win over the Oakland Athletics on Wednesday morning. A’s starting pitcher Mike Fiers threw the season’s first strike. Seattle’s Jay Bruce got the season’s first hit. Fiers’ teammate Stephen Piscotty scored the season’s first run and hit 2019’s first home run at the same time.

We’ll have to wait for our first pitcher’s duel, though. The crowd at the Tokyo Dome was treated to a bash fest, with 16 hits and five home runs between both teams. Seattle’s starter Marco Gonzales had a rough start, allowing four runs in his first three innings, but settled down and managed to throw three more scoreless innings.

After all those posts leading up to the game, it would be indecent not to link to an actual account of the game itself.

QLE Posted: March 21, 2019 at 08:22 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: athletics, japan, mariners, neutral site games, opening day

Tuesday, March 19, 2019

MLB players revel in Japan’s ‘carnival’ stadium atmosphere

Major League Baseball and Nippon Professional Baseball aren’t really so different on the field. Everyone is playing the same game and the rules are more or less the same, with some exceptions.

But as the Seattle Mariners and Oakland Athletics found out during their exhibitions against the Yomiuri Giants and Hokkaido Nippon Ham Fighters, respectively, the leagues are worlds apart in the stands, where Japanese fans take an active role in creating an atmosphere that’s a lot different than in MLB.

“That was awesome,” Mariners second baseman Dee Gordon said after facing the Giants. “It was awesome. They care about baseball. It’s an exhibition game, 46,000 people here (actual attendance: 46,315). That’s awesome. You don’t see that very often.”

Hopefully, none of them were disappointed that they didn’t have to actually fight hams….

 

QLE Posted: March 19, 2019 at 03:33 AM | 25 comment(s)
  Beats: japan, neutral site games, stadium

Saturday, March 16, 2019

Ichiro arrives in Tokyo, a sure sign baseball only days away

Ichiro Suzuki has arrived in Tokyo, a sure sign the Major League Baseball season is only days away from starting.

Wearing a gray and black hat pulled down to cover most of his head, the 45-year-old Seattle Mariners star slipped quickly through the arrival gate on Friday at Haneda Airport with hundreds of reporters and fans getting only a quick glimpse.

The Seattle Mariners and the Oakland Athletics arrived within hours of each other on Friday on charter flights from the United States. They play on Wednesday and Thursday at the Tokyo Dome in the first two games of the 2019 season.

Ichiro could have ended winter six weeks sooner, if he wanted to….

 

 

QLE Posted: March 16, 2019 at 08:24 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: ichiro suzuki, japan, neutral site games, opening day

Friday, March 15, 2019

Baseball: Yankees v Red Sox game in London a best-seller: StubHub

(Reuters) - Major League Baseball’s first-ever game in London featuring world champion Boston Red Sox and rival New York Yankees is the best-selling game of the 2019 regular season, ticket seller StubHub said on Thursday.

Following matchups in Mexico and Japan in recent years, the league is making its first foray into Europe with hopes of expanding its international reach with the help of its two most-storied franchises.

“The appeal of MLB to a global audience continues to grow, and the overwhelming response for the rivalry match-up between the Yankees and Red Sox in London certainly proves that the sport has fans worldwide,” said Jill Krimmel, a general manager at StubHub.

Mind you, a test of who the real fans are would have been to have the Marlins and Orioles play against each other….

 

QLE Posted: March 15, 2019 at 07:24 AM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: neutral site games, tickets

Thursday, March 14, 2019

Athletics excited about starting season in Japan next week

MESA, Ariz. (AP) — Oakland Athletics pitcher Liam Hendriks wants to taste soy sauce ice cream. Teammate Marco Estrada is hoping to spend a day at Tokyo Disneyland. Athletics manager Bob Melvin just needs to pack.

Melvin and the Athletics head to Japan on Thursday for the major league opening series against the Seattle Mariners at the Toyko Dome on March 20-21. The A’s and Mariners also faced each other in the last opening series in Tokyo, splitting two games in 2012. The Chicago Cubs and New York Mets played there in 2000, the New York Yankees and Tampa Bay Devil Rays in 2004, and the Boston Red Sox and Oakland in 2008.

Oakland went on to win the AL West seven years ago and reach the Division Series.

Billy Beane, meanwhile, is considering threatening to move the team to Tokyo if Oakland doesn’t have over half of downtown for a stadium.

 

QLE Posted: March 14, 2019 at 06:08 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: athletics, japan, neutral site games, opening day

Saturday, February 09, 2019

AP sources: Mets-Nats or Cubs-Cards for London in 2020

ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) Major League Baseball is considering one of two matchups for its 2020 series in London: New York Mets vs. Washington Nationals or Chicago Cubs vs. St. Louis Cardinals.

Two people familiar with the discussions told The Associated Press of the potential matchups. They spoke on condition of anonymity Friday because no announcements had been authorized. An announcement is expected after opening day this year.

I thought the point of these games was to encourage baseball in the United Kingdom, not to discourage it….

 

QLE Posted: February 09, 2019 at 06:18 AM | 13 comment(s)
  Beats: london, neutral site games

Thursday, January 10, 2019

Orioles-Yanks, Mets-Nats start MLB’s regular opening day

NEW YORK (AP) — The New York Yankees host Baltimore and Washington is at home against the New York Mets on March 28, the first games of the earliest regular major league opening day.

The commissioner’s office announced games times Wednesday for the schedule, which was released in August. The previous earliest regular start was March 30 in 2003, 2008 and 2014.

The season opens with a two-game series between Seattle and Oakland in Tokyo on March 20-21, MLB’s fifth opener in Japan after 2000, 2004, 2008 and 2012. MLB also has opened in Monterrey, Mexico (1999), San Juan, Puerto Rico (2001) and Sydney, Australia (2014).

MLB will be going all-in (in relative terms, at least) with neutral-site games- finally, a decision of theirs I can fully support!

QLE Posted: January 10, 2019 at 08:37 AM | 11 comment(s)
  Beats: neutral site games, opening day, schedule

Thursday, November 29, 2018

Tickets for Yanks-Red Sox in London in June cost $38-$493

NEW YORK (AP) — Major League Baseball is charging princely prices for its first games in Britain.

Premium seats at London’s Olympic Stadium will cost 385 pounds ($493) for the games between the New York Yankees and World Series champion Boston Red Sox on June 29 and 30. The top non-premium seats near the infield cost 320 pounds ($410).

Seats in the outfield corners go for 270 ($346) and 220 pounds ($282), according to a chart on Ticketmaster’s website. The ones behind the outfield fences go for 120 pounds ($154).

Ever get a feeling that MLB would mug us on the street if they thought we had a few bucks in our wallets?

QLE Posted: November 29, 2018 at 07:45 AM | 35 comment(s)
  Beats: dollah dollah bills, y'all, greed, london, neutral site games, red sox, yankees tickets

 

 

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