BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — The Toronto Blue Jays have received municipal and provincial approval to return home, and are seeking approval from the Canadian government, a source confirmed to News 4.
The source says club officials have submitted an application to federal officials north of the border, something that was described as the final hurdle for the Jays to clear before returning to Toronto. The new developments were first reported by Sportsnet and The Athletic.
The Blue Jays have been playing home games at Sahlen Field since June 1. They are currently scheduled to remain in Buffalo through the homestand that ends on July 21. Their next scheduled home game after that is on July 30. The source said the club is hopeful about the possibility of returning to the Rogers Centre in Toronto for that game against the Kansas City Royals.
Thus far, the Jays have played 18 games in Buffalo in 2021 after opening the season at their spring training site in Dunedin, Fla., compiling a 9-9 record. They completed a 10-game homestand Sunday afternoon, losing 5-1 to the Tampa Bay Rays. The club will begin a road trip in Baltimore Tuesday night before returning to Buffalo after the All-Star break on July 16 for a six-game homestand.
Tickets for those games against the Texas Rangers and Boston Red Sox are on sale.
The Blue Jays also played home games in Buffalo in 2020 as a result of restrictions imposed in response to the coronavirus pandemic. No fans were allowed in for those games. However in the games the club has played at Sahlen Field in 2021 through Sunday, attendance has averaged 6,682.
Chris Horvatits is an award-winning reporter who joined the News 4 team in December 2017. See more of his work here.