Royals and Tigers will play regular-season MLB game in Omaha before 2019 College World Series
Consider it an effort to grow the game, much like the series played at the home of the Little League World Series in Williamsport
During the week of the 2019 College World Series, the Detroit Tigers and Kansas City Royals will play a regular-season game at Omaha's TD Ameritrade Park. TD Ameritrade Park is of course the annual home of the College World Series.
MLB made the announcement at the ballpark Thursday.
"As fans enjoy the excitement of the College World Series, I am pleased to announce that we will be playing a Major League game in Omaha next season," said commissioner Rob Manfred in a statement. "We look forward to partnering with the NCAA and all the various parties who have worked hard to put this game together. This represents another significant step in our efforts to showcase the solidarity that links each level of our great game."
The game is part of MLB's ongoing efforts to bring the game to somewhat unconventional settings and tie it to signature events at the amateur level -- the regular-season games played at the home of the Little League World Series in Williamsport, Pennsylvania, for example. It's also part of a more subtle effort to create more synergy between the MLB product and college baseball.
As for the specific match-up, the Royals have their Triple-A affiliate based in Omaha, and Kansas City is less than a three-hour drive from Omaha. Royals outfielder Alex Gordon grew up in nearby Lincoln, Nebraska, as well.
"The bond that ties our ball club in Kansas City and the city of Omaha dates back to the first pitch ever thrown in organization history in 1969 when both the Kansas City Royals and then-Omaha Royals came into existence," said Royals senior vice president of business operations Kevin Uhlich in a statement. "Couple that with one of the greatest spectacles in college athletics, the College World Series, and we're ecstatic as an organization to participate in this historic game."
TD Ameritrade Park replaced the iconic Rosenblatt Stadium as home of the College World Series in 2011. The ballpark seats 24,000 and is generally pitcher friendly, though on a hot and humid Nebraska afternoon, the ball will carry out. As for the 2018 College World Series,.
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