Phillies to host relocated Blue Jays as road team this week
By Matt Rappa
The Phillies will now play 33 of their 60 regular season games at Citizens Bank Park this season
In June 2010, the Philadelphia Phillies hosted the Toronto Blue Jays as the road team at Citizens Bank Park due to the security concerns surrounding the G20 Summit.
The series featured the Phillies wearing their road gray uniforms and the use of the designated hitter, as the Blue Jays acted as the home squad, batting last with their walk-up music played.
Nearly one decade later, albeit under significantly different circumstances surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic, we will have a rematch. The Phillies will welcome the Blue Jays to South Philadelphia for their originally slated three-game set in Toronto from July 31 to August 2, according to Hazel Mae.
Prior, all four of the Blue Jays’ home-and-home series games against the Washington Nationals will be played at Nationals Park. Therefore, first Blue Jays game in Buffalo is now slated for August 11 against the Miami Marlins.
RELATED | Phillies: Roy Halladay tops road/home Blue Jays 10 years ago
The Blue Jays are not allowed to play in Canada this season after being denied approval from the Canadian government to play at the Rogers Centre. As a result, they are in the process of relocating their home venue to Sahlen Field in Buffalo and their alternate training site to Rochester in New York. With less than a week to get ready, it appears the Blue Jays need some extra time to “accommodate for infrastructure upgrades.”
The Blue Jays tried to relocate to PNC Park, the home of the Pittsburgh Pirates, but were similarly denied by Pennsylvania officials. They also could have played at their spring training facility in Dunedin, but given the recent virus outbreak in Florida, likely chose to refrain from the move to the Sunshine State.
Because of the series shift, eight of manager Joe Girardi‘s squad’s first 10 games this season will be played in South Philadelphia.
It is not clear whether the Phillies-Blue Jays Sept. 18-20 set, originally scheduled at Citizens Bank Park, will be moved to Buffalo. If it is, they would finish the season with nine straight road games.