PawSox Opening Night Festivities to Focus on Children

The Pawtucket Red Sox, whose Opening Night was rescheduled for Friday, April 8 at 6:15 because of rain on Thursday, will present pre-game ceremonies at 5:45 p.m. that pay tribute to the greater Pawtucket community.

Nearly 100 area children who have earned the PawSox’ “Most Improved Student” PawSox Opening Nightdistinction will escort police, firefighters, and other first responders who will present the colors along the skin of the infield.

Kaya Rose Giroux, an accomplished 16-year-old soprano from Pawtucket’s Jacqueline M. Walsh School for the Arts, is scheduled to perform the national anthem.

Two Pawtucket 8th graders, Mikhail Algoo of Slater Middle School and Anthony Martin of the Pawtucket Learning Academy, will throw Ceremonial First Pitches.  Algoo is an outstanding scholar-athlete, and Martin has been recognized by the City of Pawtucket for his courage and perseverance.  Both were discovered through the City of Pawtucket’s new Neighborhood Response Unit, a community-based approach to policing that fosters communication and trust between city residents and police officers.  The NRU, led by Captain Michael Newman, oversees Pawtucket’s school resource officers and is heavily involved in school programming.

And two longtime season-ticket holders, “Big Al” Beaulieu and Arthur Vincent, will give the command to “Play Ball.”

To begin the 7th Inning Stretch, 12-year-old Lexi Lanni of Bristol, RI, is set to sing God Bless America.  An honors student at Kickemuit Middle School, the classical singer is a member of the Rhode Island Children’s Chorus.

“These children represent the hope of Pawtucket,” said PawSox President Dr. Charles Steinberg.  “We have many young people in our community with talent and passion, and we embrace the honor of using baseball to providing an avenue of expression of their exceptional qualities.”

PawSox Home Opener Postponed Tonight at McCoy

Tonight’s (Thursday’s) scheduled PawSox home opener at McCoy Stadium between the host Pawtucket Red Sox and the Buffalo Bisons has been postponed due to rain and wet grounds.PawSox Home Opener

The PawSox will now play their 2016 home-opener on Friday at the regularly-scheduled start time of 6:15 pm with special Opening Night pre-game ceremonies slated to begin at 5:45 pm.  Friday will be just a single game at McCoy vs. Buffalo and fans holding general admission tickets for Thursday can use those on Friday.  Fans holding box seat tickets for Thursday must exchange their tickets for box seats to Friday’s game or for any future remaining regular-season game at McCoy.  Fans with complimentary tickets (including the oversized commemorative versions) may only use these tickets Friday night.

The McCoy Box Office will be open tonight until 7:00 pm and will reopen Friday morning at 9:00 am for fans’ convenience.

The first 3,000 fans entering through the gates on Friday will receive a full color poster featuring action photos of Xander Bogaerts, Mookie Betts, and Jackie Bradley, Jr.  The first 4,000 fans coming to McCoy on Friday will also receive a collector’s edition commemorative PawSox red jersey pin.  The PawSox will be unveiling their new red uniform tops during Friday’s game.

Thursday’s postponed game will be made-up as part of a doubleheader this Saturday beginning at the new start time of 12:05 pm at McCoy.  Gates will open at 10:35 am.  The single-admission twinbill will feature two 7-inning games (with a 30 minute break between games).  The Bark in the Park dog parade on the field will take place between games.

This marks Pawtucket’s first home-opener to be postponed since 2003 when the first three PawSox home games that year were all postponed due to snow (April 7, 8, and 9 vs. Ottawa).  That year the PawSox played their season-opener on April 3 in Buffalo but then were snowed-out three straight games in Buffalo (April 4, 5,and 6) only to return to McCoy and suffer three more snow-outs in a row.  The PawSox finally played on April 10 vs. Rochester but then were rained-out on April 11.

Besides tonight and 2003, the only other times that the PawSox have had their home-openers postponed occurred in 1998 (April 9 vs. Syracuse), 1987 when they had their first two games rained-out (April 17 & 18 vs. Toledo), and 1983 (April 11 vs. Columbus).

Pawtucket had just one home rain-out all of last season and it came almost one year ago on April 20 vs. Buffalo.

 

The probable pitching match-ups for the series vs. Buffalo at McCoy:

                                               

                                                                Buffalo                                                 Pawtucket

                                                               

Fri.                   6:15 pm                 RHP Drew Hutchison         vs.           LHP Henry Owens

Sat.  DH      12:05 pm     G1      LHP Scott Diamond           vs.           RHP Sean O’Sullivan

G2      RHP Scott Copeland          vs.           RHP William Cuevas

Sun.                1:05 pm                 LHP Wade LeBlanc            vs.           LHP Brian Johnson