With Major League Baseball shortening its season to 60 games due to the coronavirus pandemic and on-going labor disputes, Minor League Baseball's fate remained up in the air.
Its fate is now official: there will be no minor league baseball in 2020. In a statement Tuesday, Major League Baseball informed Minor League Baseball "it will not be providing its affiliated Minor League teams with players for the 2020 season."
This means the season is over before it started for the local Jacksonville Jumbo Shrimp, the Marlins Double-A affiliate.
“The news that we will not have Jumbo Shrimp baseball at 121 Financial Ballpark is devastating,” Jumbo Shrimp owner/CEO Ken Babby said in a statement. “While we are disappointed there will be no Jumbo Shrimp baseball in 2020, we are looking forward to the many socially-distanced and safe events that continue to bring Affordable Family Fun to our community.”
While baseball at all levels has been suspended, the Jumbo Shrimp have hosted a wide variety of events, including Movie Nights and "Gameless" Thirsty Thursdays.
“We are incredibly disappointed and crushed to not have a Jumbo Shrimp baseball season at 121 Financial Ballpark in 2020,” said Jumbo Shrimp executive vice president/general manager Harold Craw. “We still look at ourselves as leaders in part of the safe reopening of Jacksonville, and safety for our fans and staff will always be our top priority. Thanks to the trust instilled by the community, we are providing alternative affordable and fun outdoor and socially-distanced events at 121 Financial Ballpark. We will hopefully await Jumbo Shrimp baseball to return in 2021.”
Fans who have purchased individual game tickets for any game of the 2020 season will automatically receive a credit to their Jumbo Shrimp ticket account. That credit may be utilized at any point for any 2021 Jumbo Shrimp ticket purchase as tickets, season tickets or mini-plans are released for sale. A 2021 season schedule and promotional schedule will be announced at a later date, prior to individual game tickets going on sale for the 2021 season.
In the meantime, again: the Jumbo Shrimp will continue to host events at 121 Financial Ballpark at the Baseball Grounds of Jacksonville, including a Movie and Fireworks Night this upcoming Friday.