Tincaps Opening Night

By John W. Davis

April 6, 2011 Updated Apr 8, 2011 at 11:36 AM EDT

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (Indiana's NewsCenter) - Play ball! You know it's officially Spring, when it's baseball season in Fort Wayne.

Opening Day for the Fort Wayne TinCaps is Thursday night.

First pitch is at 7:05 p.m., as the TinCaps host a Thursday through Sunday series against the South Bend Silver Hawks.

Meanwhile, hundreds of fans attended the annual meet the team night on Wednesday.

Fans were able to watch batting practice and then get autographs with every member on the 2011 Opening Day Fort Wayne TinCaps roster.

Indiana's NewsCenter spoke with plenty of fans who said opening day can't get here soon enough.

"Opening Day is special anywhere, major league, minor leagues. The first day of the season, everybody is in first place," said New Haven Resident & TinCaps Fan Ron Hollandsworth.

"Spring. It's the smell of the grass, everything that you grew up as a kid liking about baseball, it's here," said Fort Wayne Resident & TinCaps Fan Robb Bilderback.

"You waited all winter for it, and finally it's here," continued Bilderback, who attended the Meet The Team Night with his young daughter Kavy.

Bilderback said Kavy, who looked to be around three years old, loves the TinCaps mascot Johnny.

"Go Tin Caps!," yelled Kavy, when prompted by her father.

Fans also told Indiana's NewsCenter that Parkview Field and relatively inexpensive tickets are what makes TinCaps games, a great place to get together with family and friends.

"Number one, I love the game of baseball. Fort Wayne has the atmosphere for baseball," said Auburn Resident & TinCaps Fan Lenny Baughman.

Baughman said he attended about 14 games last year.

He said he enjoyed the experience so much that he bought a season ticket package for himself and his daughter.

Meanwhile, fans who attend Opening Night will receive 3-D glasses.

TinCaps executives said their production crew will broadcast 3-D messages about eight or nine times throughout Thursday night's game.

Indiana's NewsCenter contacted the TinCaps box office late Thursday night.

A few tickets were still available but a box office manager said a sellout is highly likely.

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