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The Roanoke Times (Virginia)
OMAHA, Neb. — Major League Baseball will come to Omaha for a day next year as part of an initiative to take the product to new places, commissioner Rob Manfred said Thursday.
As part of the buildup for the 2019 College World Series, the Detroit Tigers will play a regular-season game against the Kansas City Royals at TD Ameritrade Park on June 13. The CWS starts two days later.
"The College World Series in and of itself is a great event with a great tradition," Manfred said at a news conference. "We hope by playing here we bring even more attention to this game and help strengthen our relationship with the NCAA and college baseball as a whole."
Manfred said there's no commitment to play a regular-season game in Omaha beyond next year, but that possibility exists.
MLB has played regular-season games in Cuba, Mexico, Puerto Rico and also at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, and in Williamsport, Pennsylvania in conjunction with the Little League World Series.
"Each of these events has helped focus the attention of the United States and major parts of the world on what we think of as the greatest game of the world," Manfred said. "The game here in Omaha will be the next step in this important initiative."
The Royals-Tigers matchup will be played in the 24,000-seat stadium that opened in 2011.
"This may be the best non-major league facility in North America," he said.
Of the 641 drafted players on major league opening day rosters this year, 61 percent were from four-year colleges.
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