LANSING, Mich (WLNS) – Opening Day for any baseball affiliation is a special time for baseball fans but for the Lansing Lugnuts faithful, who have waited over 600 days since the last game, today was more than memorable.
Opening up the 25th season began with a new affiliation with the Oakland Athletics made for new players and faces for the 2,200 Lugnuts fans in attendance to get to see for the first time.
Before the game against the Lake County Captains, we were joined by new Lugnuts manager, Scott Steinmann, who shared his excitement for a brand new season in Lansing.
It was a good sign from the first pitch strike from starting pitcher Seth Shuman, who went on to pitch four scoreless innings, struck out seven batters, only have two hits, and didn’t walk a single Captain.
Then in the bottom of the first inning, 20-year-old slugger Jordan Diaz launched a home run over the left-field wall and onto the grass hill at Jackson Field to take an early two-run lead. From there the Lugnuts would go on to score at least one run through the first four innings finishing with ten hits as a team going on to win the season opener, 8-1.
When speaking with Manager Steinmann and Seth Shuman after the game, they told us what it was like to take in the Lansing atmosphere playing at Jackson Field for the first time.
“It was fun man, I was you know out at third base and we scored a couple runs there early and you could hear some of the excitement, kinda got little chills I just got chills right now thinking of it again it’s just it’s kinda cool to get back into that environment again,” said Steinmann. “I’m just glad that we had that today and hopefully that plays on to our future games.”
“It was awesome to you know go out there for warm-ups see the fans all there you know had that baseball smell but yeah it was definitely a lot of fun,” said Shuman. “Definitely awesome to get back out there in front of the fans and just the environment that was out there tonight was like great.”
The Lugnuts will be back at Jackson Field for game two of their six game series against the Lake County Captains, first pitch is set for 7:05 p.m.