Minor League Baseball 2020 Season Canceled
INDIANAPOLIS - Due to the many COVID-19 related challenges that would accompany staffing team rosters for a two-month season, Major League Baseball has advised that it will not provide players to the teams of Minor League Baseball in 2020, resulting in the cancellation of this season. The 2020 campaign would have marked the 119th consecutive season of operation for the Indianapolis Indians.
"We are disappointed and saddened by today's announcement. We had remained hopeful that Indians baseball this summer would serve as a rallying cry for our community as we begin our recovery from the pandemic," said Randy Lewandowski, Indianapolis Indians President & General Manager. "Our heartfelt condolences go out to families affected by COVID-19 during this unimaginable time. We are extremely grateful for healthcare professionals and frontline employees who continue pushing forward every day to keep our community safe."
Community support has been critical for local nonprofits who provide aid to essential workers and those affected by COVID-19. Since the pandemic reached Indiana, Tribe fans have stepped up to the plate in this serious time of need. Thanks to an online merchandise match program, #IndiansOpeningStay campaign, and the month of May being dedicated to COVID-19 relief, Indianapolis Indians Charities has donated over 80,000 meals and $40,000 to local nonprofits since mid-March. The May COVID-19 relief campaign was sparked by the collective efforts of an online auction, baseball memorabilia mystery item giveaway, and a Tribe Tickets for Good initiative where one Indians game ticket was donated to frontline healthcare professionals and essential workers for every $10 donation.
Without Indians baseball, the organization has repositioned its efforts to host alternate events at Victory Field in 2020 while following state and local public health guidelines. Victory Field has numerous community events already on the calendar beginning next month:
Tuesday, July 7 (12 PM to 5 PM): Victory Field Blood Drive
Indianapolis Indians Charities, Strada and Sun King Brewery have partnered with the American Red Cross of Indiana to host a blood drive at Victory Field on Tuesday, July 7. Blood donors will receive a goodie bag with items from the Indianapolis Indians and Sun King.
Friday, July 10 (11 AM to 2 PM): 31st Annual Ice Cream Social at Victory Field
American Dairy Association Indiana's Ice Cream Social - one of downtown Indy's greatest summer traditions - makes its way to Victory Field on Friday, July 10. Pre-packaged ice cream novelties will be distributed during the drive-thru/walk-up event, and Indianapolis Indians Charities will match the first $5,000 in donations. All proceeds benefit Second Helpings.
Thursday, July 16; Thursday, July 23; Thursday, July 30 (6:30 PM): Grand Park College Summer League games at Victory Field
On each of the final three Thursdays in July, Victory Field will host a nine-inning game featuring college baseball players from all over the country. The July 16 contest will be the 12-team league's All-Star Game, July 23 will feature the top two teams from the regular season, and July 30 is the league championship. The team rosters include players from over 10 in-state schools and players representing the Big Ten (B1G), Southeastern Conference (SEC), Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) and Missouri Valley Conference (MVC). First pitch for each game is at 6:30 PM.
Saturday, Sept. 5 (9 AM to 3 PM): Grand Slam Auto Show at Victory Field
Victory Field is set to host its first auto show in partnership with the Hoosier Coachmen Car Club. The Grand Slam Auto Show is free to the public to attend. Reserve a spot for your hot rod, classic car or bike here.
Saturday, Sept. 26: IndyHumane's Mutt Strut at Victory Field
Bring your furry friend(s) to IndyHumane's annual Mutt Strut, scheduled for the final Saturday in September, rain or shine. Register your pup here.
Dates to be announced soon: The Links at Victory Field
Multiple tee boxes and pin locations will be scattered throughout Victory Field as golfers and fans of all ages are welcome for this exclusive experience. Look for more info on this event soon.
"We have always viewed Victory Field as a gathering place for fun and affordable entertainment for all ages - bringing family and friends together through the game of baseball," said Lewandowski. "We hope these alternate events at the ballpark help provide a return to normalcy while following health protocols and guidelines. It goes without saying... we truly look forward to baseball's return to downtown Indianapolis in 2021."
Additional 2020 season updates regarding the COVID-19 pandemic can be found here, including updated ticket policies and procedures. Please email the Victory Field Box Office at [emailÂ protected] or contact an Indians sales representative for more information.
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