One of baseball’s biggest rivalries is going international in 2019. Major League Baseball announced Tuesday that the New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox will play a series of games against each other in London in 2019.
When is it happening?
The series will take place on June 29 and 30, 2019, and will be played at London Stadium, the 55,000 seat venue that served as the home for the 2012 Olympic Games. MLB, the MLB Players Association, and the Mayor of London have also agreed to play another series in London in 2020, with dates and teams to be set in the future.
Why is it happening?
Since becoming commissioner, Rob Manfred has discussed making the game more appealing to international audiences. He’s worked to make that a reality by scheduling games and events in other countries. The Toronto Blue Jays have continued playing some exhibition games in Montreal each season, the Minnesota Twins and Cleveland Indians played a series of games in Puerto Rico in 2018 and MLB sent former All-Stars to London last season to participate in a Home Run Derby.
This isn’t even the first time MLB will go international in 2019. The Oakland Athletics and Seattle Mariners will kick off the 2019 regular season in Japan in March. However, this marks the very first time an MLB game will be played in Europe.
Does it have to be the Yankees and the Red Sox?
Hey, why not? Love them or hate them, both teams are among the most popular in MLB. If the league wants to make the game more appealing to an international audience, they can help themselves by taking two of the most recognizable brands to London.
And hey, if you don’t like it, then you can hope both teams suffer from horrible jet lag that throws them off for a few games after they return.
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