MLB Moves Astros-Rangers Series to Tropicana Field
Due to Hurricane Harvey, Major League Baseball has relocated the Houston Astros three-game series scheduled at Minute Maid Park against the Texas Rangers to Tropicana Field, home of the Tampa Bay Rays.
Tropicana Field, home of the Tampa Bay Rays has become a neutral home site for the Houston Astros as MLB has relocated their three-game series against the Texas Rangers beginning on Tuesday due to the extreme flooding in the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey.
Houston had been scheduled to open a six-game home stand hosting the their cross-town rivals Texas Rangers before their three-game weekend set against the New York Mets. At this time, MLB has not determined if it will be necessary to relocate the Mets series, but if they do, the games would also be played in Tropicana Field.
Since the Rays are out of town through Sept. 4, Tropicana Field was made available by the Tampa Bay Rays organization as a neutral site. In April 2015, due to civil unrest the Rays accommodated the Baltimore Orioles by hosting their scheduled road series at Tropicana Field.
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According to MLB, the games are set for Tuesday and Wednesday at 7:10 p.m. ET with a 1:10 p.m. ET start time for Thursday’s series finale. The Astros are designated as the home team.
Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times, via “The Heater” column just reported that the Associated Press has learned through a person of knowledge who spoke on a condition of anonymity that the Mets series beginning on Friday has also been relocated to Tropicana Field. However, no official word has come from MLB or from the teams.
In addition to Topkin, numerous other media sites (New York Daily News, ABC News, WTSP-10 Sarasota) are reporting the same information as Associated Press.
Sam Butler of MLB.com reports that the Astros and the Rangers discussed other options, such as moving the games to Globe Life Park, home of the Rangers with the Rangers being the visiting team. However, Butler states that weather concerns prevented that from happening.
Another option was swapping their series scheduled for September, but the Rangers refused due to the fact it would have created a 12-game road trip.
On the other hand, Mark Berman Sports Director at Fox 26 (KRIV) via Twitter tweeted that the Rangers did not want to play ball with the Astros in regards to swapping home stands. Instead, the Rangers wanted to have all the games as their “home games.”
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Meanwhile, if indeed the Mets series is moved to Tropicana Field, the Astros will wind up playing 19-games on the road and not returning to Minute Maid Park until Sept. 15 when they are scheduled to host the Seattle Mariners.