Their stadium incomplete, Baysox to start in Frederick


The Bowie Baysox will hold a news conference today to announce that the bulk of their early-season home games will be played at Frederick's Grove Stadium.

The games are being moved because construction on the Baysox's stadium in Bowie has been delayed by the icy winter and rainy spring.

The Double-A Eastern League team has been targeting May 20 as the opening date for Prince George's Stadium. If the rain continues, that date may have to be set back.

The home opener April 12 and two subsequent games against the Trenton Thunder have been scheduled for Frederick, with the fourth in the series (April 15) postponed until later in the season so as not to conflict with the Single-A Frederick Keys' schedule.

Five more home games are set for Frederick through May 8, but where games scheduled for April 16 and 17 will be played is uncertain.

The Baysox had hoped to play the April 16-17 games against Canton at Camden Yards, but that has been ruled out by conflicts with social events at the park and the cushy condition of the playing surface.

"With all the bad weather, we were a little bit nervous about our field at this point in the season," said Orioles vice president Doug Melvin. "Plus a lot of activities are scheduled in the park that weekend.

"Down the road we'll look at it again because we're certainly not opposed to the minor-league teams playing there."

Melvin said he has told the Baysox players in Florida that they will have to look at the first month and a half of the season "as one big road trip, like the Houston Astros had [in 1992, when the Astrodome was booked for the Republican National Convention]."

Another series, April 29-May 1, against the Reading Phillies will be played at Judy Johnson Field, home of the Wilmington (Del.) Blue Rocks.

Home games after May 8 may be scheduled for the University of Maryland's Shipley Field.

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