Raider Day 2018 | Photograph courtesy of the Dayton Dragons.
The Dayton Dragons 2020 season will be canceled, due to Major League Baseball deciding not to provide its affiliated Minor League Baseball teams with players for the 2020 season.
“These are unprecedented times for our country and our organization as this is the first time in our history that we’ve had a summer without Minor League Baseball played,” said MiLB President & CEO Pat O’Conner in a press release.
The Dayton Dragons announced a new naming rights agreement to their stadium in January with Day Air Credit Union. It will now be named the Day Air Ballpark, but fans will have to wait until the 2021 season to enter the stadium.
“This is a disappointing day for many. We have worked very hard during the off-season to make the 21 season of Dragons baseball a great one here at Day Air Ballpark,” said Robert Murphy, Dragons team president.
What’s next for the Dragons
The season was originally supposed to begin in April, but the coronavirus pandemic forced them to delay the start of the season.
This announcement to cancel the season removes any uncertainty and the Dragons can now look forward to the 2021 season.
“We will now work with our state government, local government, public health directors, Major League Baseball, Minor League Baseball, and the Midwest League to ensure that we are prepared to open the ballpark for our 21 season next year in 2021,” said Murphy.
It still isn’t necessarily a guarantee that stadiums will allow full capacity for fans next season, but the Dragons are remaining optimistic.
“There are still many unknowns moving forward on large mass gatherings, but we will work tirelessly to ensure that when you come to Day Air Ballpark, not only will it be fun, affordable, and exciting, but also very safe,” said Murphy.
Impact on WSU
The Wright State baseball season coincides with the Dragons season, so this doesn’t directly impact WSU.
With the Dragons being a professional team, there is a multitude of moving parts that go into their season as opposed to the WSU baseball team.
“I do know from experience that there is a lot that revolves around minor league baseball, not just the players and the workers, but the communities as well,” said Alex Sogard, WSU head baseball coach.
It does however, create some obstacles that WSU will have to overcome and adjust to during their next season.
“Next year will likely be different than it has ever been from a day to day standpoint. We may have to wear masks on the field, be more aware of spreading guys out in the dugout, and even focusing more on individual groups in practice,” according to Sogard.
As of now, there hasn’t been any indication on next season being canceled or delayed, but they are definitely preparing for changes in a lot of aspects.