The Delmarva Shorebirds played their first game at Arthur W. Perdue Stadium in Salisbury, Maryland on this date in 1996. Playing then as a South Atlantic League affiliate of the Montreal Expos (now the Washington Nationals) the Shorebirds defeated the Columbus RedStixx by a score of 4 to 2 before an opening night crowd of 5,787 fans. The game represented the return of professional baseball to Delmarva after a nearly 50 year absence.
Shorebirds pitcher Javier Vazquez threw the game’s first pitch and fan favorite Orlando Cabrera manned the shortstop position in the infield. Both went on to play Major League Baseball.
Skies were clear with a Wednesday game time temperature of 52 degrees when the Shorebirds took the field for the top of the first inning pictured here. A large framed photograph of this image is displayed in the lobby at Perdue Stadium. If you look closely you’ll see that this photo actually shows the second pitch of the game.
When the sun set on that clear and chilly April evening in 1996 the temperature dipped to 43 degrees as the game ended.
Now an affiliate of the Baltimore Orioles the Shorebirds would have been in the midst of beginning their 25th season on Delmarva. The coronavirus pandemic had other plans. The fact that fans on the shore are missing out on this entertainment option is another subtle reminder of the devastating economic impact occurring all throughout our nation.
When baseball returns we’ll all know that it is safe to return to our normal way of living. If it doesn’t return we’ll know it’s not yet the time to relax with the social distancing.
Today’s weather in Salisbury will be mostly cloudy and a bit warmer than it was on this date 24 years ago.
Chilly morning out there! Temperatures are in the low to mid 30s for many areas away from the ocean and bay. Today will be mostly sunny with high temperatures in the 60s. ☀️#VAwx #NCwx #MDwx pic.twitter.com/TfIaVdTH4p
— NWS Wakefield (@NWSWakefieldVA) April 17, 2020
Salisbury is waking up to a 32 degree morning. The freeze warning will last until 9 AM. Expect temps to reach near 60 degrees before cooling off to the low 50’s overnight. Showers are possible overnight into Saturday morning when we will expect to see temperatures cool off a few degrees.
Hang in there, the weather will slowly get better as life, in general, gets better as well. Many of us look forward to hearing the man in blue yell, “Play ball!”