Minor League Teams Revel In Eclipse Day

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you know that Monday marked the first total solar eclipse to traverse the United States in nearly a century. The path of totality crossed from the northwest corner of Oregon and finished around Columbia, S.C. There were plenty of minor league teams in or near that path, and many of them pulled out all the stops for special days surrounding the once-in-a-lifetime event. This being the social media era, those teams also shared their experiences on Twitter. Let’s take a look.

This photo was taken from Volcanoes Stadium, home of the Northwest League’s Salem-Keizer Volcanoes. The team opened the stadium at 5 a.m. so fans could have breakfast and settle in before the game’s 9:30 start time, scheduled specifically so the team could claim the first game to have an eclipse delay.

Once the eclipse began, the game was stopped, and fans and players alike put on their special glasses to take a look.

Across the country, the Midwest League’s Bowling Green Hot Rods were prepared, too. They also gave out glasses and wore jerseys to commemorate the occasion. They lost the game to West Michigan, but still put together a memorable experience.

West Michigan broadcaster Dan Hasty got in on the fun too, posting this time-lapse footage from his perch in Bowling Green.

A little more to the east, the Columbia Fireflies centered an entire weekend around the eclipse. The team brought a mobile NASA center to the park to give fans the chance to learn about the science behind what was happening millions of miles above. But once the eclipse began, the players were just as awestruck as the fans and other interested onlookers around the country. The game stopped, and everybody got their glasses and took a look.

As a bonus, the Fireflies also had Jay Jabs, who came prepared with tattoos of the sun and the moon on his hands. So, he made his own eclipse.

Not only was the game not a blowout when Jabs entered, the Fireflies were leading Rome 5-3. Jabs pitched a scoreless eighth inning and was in line to get a hold until Columbia surrendered two runs in the top of the ninth.

Perhaps the most unfortunate people in baseball during the eclipse were broadcasters whose teams didn’t stop their games for the event. Such was the case for Lansing Lugnuts radio man Jesse Goldberg-Strassler, who tweeted a picture from his booth of fans watching the eclipse while the game was going on in the background.

Some of the teams, however, were able to get some pretty good footage of the eclipse as it happened. I don’t know what kind of camera they’re using in El Paso, but I sure want one. If this footage is real, it’s probably the best taken anywhere, by anyone. Judge for yourself.

The eclipse overtook the minor leagues on Monday, and the minor leagues, as usual, had a blast.

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