Blue Jays’ stadium in Buffalo hosts its first MLB game of 2020

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The Blue Jays finally set flight in their temporary Buffalo home on Tuesday night.

The team, which can’t play in Toronto during the COVID-19 pandemic, hosted the Marlins at Sahlen Field. The ballpark usually serves as the home of the Blue Jays’ Triple-A affiliate.

While the game did not have the appearance of a typical big league setting, it did the job during the most unsettled time for U.S. sports since World War II.

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Here’s what to know about the occasion and how the Blue Jays ended up in Buffalo:

Why are the Blue Jays playing in Buffalo?

Canada has the COVID-19 pandemic under better control than the U.S., and balked at the idea of MLB teams streaming across its border. That left the Blue Jays scrambling for a home as Opening Day approached. Pittsburgh was floated as a possible destination, but the city nixed the proposal. Because minor league baseball was canceled this year, Buffalo emerged as the top option for the club.

What is the name of Buffalo’s baseball stadium?

Buffalo’s baseball stadium is called Sahlen Field. It was built in 1988.

Has MLB ever played in Buffalo before?

MLB has played in Buffalo — more than 100 years ago. The last big league contest in the upstate New York city came in 1915, when the short-lived Federal League held Buffalo Blues games.

What are the features of the Buffalo baseball stadium?

Social distancing rules, combined with the limited confines of a Triple-A venue, have made things weird at Sahlen Field. Perhaps the strangest quirk is the visiting clubhouse being a tent in a parking lot behind the right field wall. Brighter lights have also been added to the ballpark, and plenty of Blue Jays logos are pasted around the makeshift MLB home.

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