xml:space="preserve">
xml:space="preserve">
Advertisement
Advertisement

Orioles-Red Sox game scheduled to be held at Little League World Series canceled due to coronavirus pandemic

Fireworks explode over Bowman Stadium as the 16 Little League Regional Champions line the infield before the Little League Classic baseball game between the Chicago Cubs and Pittsburgh Pirates in Williamsport, Pa., Sunday, Aug. 18, 2019.
Fireworks explode over Bowman Stadium as the 16 Little League Regional Champions line the infield before the Little League Classic baseball game between the Chicago Cubs and Pittsburgh Pirates in Williamsport, Pa., Sunday, Aug. 18, 2019. (Gene J. Puskar)

If baseball resumes in any form this summer, the Orioles won’t make their scheduled trip to Williamsport, Pennsylvania, to play in Major League Baseball’s annual Little League Classic.

The Sunday-night showcase game during the Little League World Series scheduled for Aug. 23 between the Orioles and Red Sox has been canceled. The announcement was part of a statement from Little League officials that they wouldn’t be hosting the youth baseball world championship tournament because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Advertisement

Little League said MLB and the Major League Baseball Players Association are committed to the game returning in 2021.

“Delivering this news comes with a very heavy heart,” Little League International board of directors chairman Hugh E. Tanner said in a statement. “We have never had to cancel our World Series tournaments, but, right now, as our world comes together, we must do everything we can to help stem the spread of this deadly virus.”

Advertisement

The announcement cited the difficulties of playing the required qualifying tournaments, possible international travel issues, and public health considerations as it relates to testing and hosting large public events.

It was difficult to imagine the Orioles and Red Sox playing such a game in August, given the game was meant to be tacked on to a series at Oriole Park at Camden Yards and it’s unclear whether the MLB season will take place at home ballparks.

The Little League Classic would have been a rare national television opportunity for the Orioles, with the game broadcast on ESPN and enjoyed by the players, coaches and families of the Little League World Series teams.

When the game was announced last summer, Orioles manager Brandon Hyde said he and the team were looking forward to it.

“I know just watching it on TV how much fun it looks like players have, and the interaction with the kids,” Hyde said. "Obviously, Williamsport is something we all dreamed about as kids trying to get there and play in the Little League World Series. I’ve never been there. To go there and experience that and meet everybody up there, and to play on Sunday Night Baseball in that kind of environment is going to be a really cool experience.

“It’s something that I always wanted to do as a kid. You grow up watching it on ABC, and it’s something where you’re trying to get there as a kid. We fell a little short, but obviously it’s something that’s a really, really cool thing. Americana.”

Recommended on Baltimore Sun

Advertisement
Advertisement