07.23.20

AS THE TORONTO BLUE JAYS DECIDE THEIR HOME FOR THE 2020 MLB SEASON, SCHUMER, IN LETTER & PERSONAL CALL TO MLB COMMISSIONER ROB MANFRED, PITCHES BUFFALO’S SAHLEN FIELD TO HOST THE TEAM FOR THE 2020 SEASON

Border Restrictions From COVID Crisis Prevent The Blue Jays From Playing In Toronto; As Opening Day Dawns, Toronto’s Neighbor, Buffalo, Is Warmed Up And Ready To Take The Mound 

Senator Says Blue Jays Should Call Buffalo Home For The 2020 MLB Season 

Schumer: Batter Up Blue Jays! Buffalo’s The Natural Place to Play in 2020

A longtime fan of baseball and supporter of baseball teams in New York, U.S. Senator Charles E. Schumer today urged the Major League Baseball (MLB) Commissioner, Rob Manfred, and the Toronto Blue Jays to choose Buffalo as their home for the 2020 MLB season. Schumer explained that Buffalo is the perfect location to host the Blue Jays because of the proximity to Toronto, the major league quality of the playing surface at Sahlen Field, the capability of the City of Buffalo to safely host a major league team for the duration of the season, and the community’s enthusiasm for baseball.

“Buffalo is the natural place for the Blue Jays to play the 2020 season – it is near Toronto, Sahlen Field is top notch, and the Buffalo fan base is major league quality. With opening day upon us, there is no time to waste. MLB and the Jays should just make the call and let Buffalo get up to bat. I have zero doubt that we will knock it out of the park for the Blue Jays,” said Senator Schumer. “I told my friend Commissioner Manfred that not only is the city ready to welcome the team with wide-open arms, the partnership between Buffalo and the Blue Jays would be a home run for the city, the team, MLB and the local economy.”

Schumer said on the call with Manfred that Sahlen Field is currently not hosting any other teams, and having a dedicated facility for the Blue Jays will help with scheduling concerns with host teams. The senator also addressed previous logistical and infrastructural concerns, stating that because of the short duration of the season, the City of Buffalo and Rich Baseball Operations would be able to make necessary adjustments to help the team have a successful season in Buffalo.

Schumer also noted that the Blue Jay’s season in Buffalo would be beneficial to Western New York, bringing back dozens of lost jobs and helping to revitalize the local economy.

Senator Schumer’s letter to Commissioner Manfred appears below:

Dear Commissioner Manfred,

I write to urge Major League Baseball (MLB) and the Toronto Blue Jays to choose the City of Buffalo and Sahlen Field to play their home games for this abbreviated, but eagerly anticipated, 2020 season. Since it is Opening Day, there is little time for continued deliberation – now is the time to act – and Buffalo is ready to roll out the red carpet and welcome Major League Baseball to Sahlen Field and Western New York.

The partnership between Rich Baseball Enterprises, the Buffalo Bisons, and the Toronto Blue Jays has been strong since their affiliation began in 2013. The geographic proximity to Toronto and the access of Blue Jays fans to their AAA farm team has been beneficial to both cities. Buffalo has a sterling baseball pedigree, but hasn’t hosted Major League Baseball since 1890. It is time to rectify that lost opportunity.

The current ballpark was the precursor to everything from Camden Yards to Progressive Field. Designed with the intention of luring a Major League franchise, Sahlen Field is among the top flight of minor league venues. Having already played host to many of the players currently on Major League rosters, I have no doubt that any logistical concerns could be overcome in time for games to be played. Moreover, as a city, Buffalo has the capacity to host the Blue Jays operation during the duration of the season, and indeed would welcome them with the city’s extraordinary community spirit.

The cancellation of the International League schedule has resulted not only in an empty ballpark, but the loss of dozens of jobs and the postponement of summer baseball at Sahlen Field. The Western New York community is ready to live up to its reputation as the “City of Good Neighbors” and welcome Major League Baseball back to Buffalo with open arms.

Again, I strongly urge MLB and the Blue Jays to choose Buffalo as your home for the 2020 season. Please let me know if I can be of any further assistance on this matter or if you have any questions.

Sincerely,

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