In more disappointing news today, we learned that Minor League Baseball will not happen this summer. Thus, any hope for a Round Rock Express season is now gone.
However, the team at the Dell Diamond has worked hard in anticipation that this might occur and are still bringing baseball to the city. Starting next Tuesday, July 7, the Round Rock Hairy Men will play their first game with the Texas Collegiate League.
From their press release:
Minor League Baseball announced this afternoon that Major League Baseball has informed the league that it will not be providing its affiliated Minor League teams with players for the 2020 season. As a result, there will not be a professional Minor League Baseball season in Round Rock in 2020.
Despite the announcement, the Round Rock Express are moving forward to bring baseball back to the Central Texas community through the Round Rock Hairy Men, a temporary expansion team in the Texas Collegiate League. The Hairy Men kick off the 2020 season tonight against the Brazos Valley Bombers in Bryan. Opening Day at Dell Diamond is scheduled for Tuesday, July 7 at 7:05 p.m. against the Victoria Generals.
“While today’s announcement that there will not be a Minor League Baseball season is truly unprecedented, it is one that we have been preparing for over the last several weeks,” Round Rock Express President Chris Almendarez said. “We had remained optimistic about the potential of hosting a Round Rock Express season, but we also began developing plans to bring baseball and other special events to the Central Texas community in a safe and responsible manner. This begins tonight with ‘The Pfinal Game’ at Dell Diamond and will continue next week with the beginning of our home slate of Texas Collegiate League action.”
Dell Diamond is set to host The Pfinal Game tonight at 7:00 p.m. as a way to honor graduating seniors from all four Pflugerville-area high schools. The nine-inning game will mark the first live baseball action at Dell Diamond since a high school showdown between Cedar Creek and Pflugerville Connally on March 9, a span of 113 days.
“I want to personally thank our sponsors, corporate partners, season ticket members, fans and the entire Central Texas community for their unwavering support during what has been a difficult time for our organization,” Round Rock Express General Manager Tim Jackson said. “The Round Rock Express will be back, but until then, we are excited for the upcoming Round Rock Hairy Men season and we hope that our community can rally around this team and help support our organization until Minor League Baseball returns.”
This marks the first time that Minor League Baseball season has been cancelled since the league was founded as the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues on September 5, 1901.
“These are unprecedented times for our country and our organization as this is the first time in our history that we’ve had a summer without Minor League Baseball played,” Minor League Baseball President & CEO Pat O’Conner said. “While this is a sad day for many, this announcement removes the uncertainty surrounding the 2020 season and allows our teams to begin planning for an exciting 2021 season of affordable family entertainment.”