Fans and players excited to ‘play ball’ again

Red Sox

BOSTON (WPRI) — Players, coaches and umpires may be among the only people inside Fenway Park Friday at the Red Sox home opener, but that doesn’t mean fans won’t be able to join in with some of the excitement.

Opening ceremonies will begin at 7 p.m., with a focus on social justice and the Black Lives Matter movement. There will be a surprise guest that management says represents the movement and resiliency for Boston residents. On Wednesday, a large Black Lives Matter sign was placed on the outer wall of Fenway Park.

Starting on the mound for the Red Sox will be pitcher Nathan Eovaldi.

“It’s important, I feel like the team that can start off the hottest and stay hot can make it to the playoffs,” Eovaldi said in a Zoom call Thursday. “They say it’s not how you start, it’s how you finish, but in this scenario I think you’ve got to start off hot and ride that wave and keep going.”

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Players feed off of the energy from the crowd, but Friday night they will be looking at empty bleachers.

For fans who want to feel like a piece of them is there, they can order a $500 cutout of themselves to be placed in the Green Monster seats. All proceeds go to the Red Sox Foundation, which supports veteran groups and youth sports, among other organizations.

While you would normally want to avoid getting hit by a ball, in this season you may want your cutout to get hit. If someone’s cutout gets hit they will receive the home run ball signed by the player who hit it and two Green Monster seats for next season.

Fans are also to feel apart of the excitement by being right outside Fenway Park and coming down to the iconic Lansdowne Street to cheer on the team.

The city of Boston worked with business owners to have outdoor seating available, tables at least six feet apart and someone is in charge of making sure everyone complies with social distancing guidelines.

One thing still missing is the big screen TV’s, but the restaurants are still working with the city to have those put up along Lansdowne Street.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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