BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) – The Toronto Blue Jays walk-off win in their home opener at Sahlen Field Tuesday night could be described as “jaw-dropping”. Which is exactly how the team’s general manager described the transformation of the ballpark from a minor league stadium to a major league stadium.
Even though fans were not being let into the stadium, and police officials were urging people to stay away, some people just wanted to be close to the action. That’s why sisters Mariah and Gabby Howe were walking around the ballpark with a camera before the game.
“Just wanted to take a look around,” Mariah said. “Thought it was pretty cool that Major League Baseball was being played in Buffalo.”
Meanwhile, in the sky, Paul Kolkmeyer has a perfect view of the action from his home atop the Marin Building.
“We’ll have a great time watching them,” Howe said. “We’ll have a number of our friends over. In fact, all my Red Sox games and all of the Yankee games are already taken. I have friends for every one of those games already.”
Social distancing will be enforced, he promises.
“The only other thing I’ll add is, look I go to bed at 10 p.m., so if the game is still going on you have to leave,” Kolkmeyer added.
At Union Pub, across the street from the ballpark, people flocked to the bar to be near the action. That’s exactly what management was predicting.
“It’s just the feeling about it,” said Matt Orszewski, one of the bar’s patrons. Especially with this time. Uncertain times with the COVID pandemic going on, there’s a great feeling of hope and family in Buffalo.”
Far beyond the outfield wall, a crowd gathered beside the on ramp from Oak Street onto I-190 to try and catch the action. Mackenzie Dick and her father stayed on the sidewalk of Oak Street looking for a ball. And sure enough, they got one during batting practice.
“We don’t get that much time especially because he has a lot of work. So this is a good experience because I like hanging out with my dad,” Mackenzie said.