The reigning Southern League champion Birmingham Barons will open the 2014 season at Regions Field against Major League Baseball's Chicago White Sox, the team announced Tuesday.
The Barons will host its parent club in an exhibition game Friday, March 28, 2014 with first pitch set for 6 p.m. The meeting between the two teams will be the first since 2007 and seventh overall in the Barons' 28 seasons as the White Sox Double-A affiliate, a partnership that has produced five Southern League Championships and a 2005 World Series Championship.
"The Chicago White Sox are excited to return to Birmingham to play the Barons in an exhibition game before the start of our 2014 regular season," said White Sox General Manager Rick Hahn. "It will be a great opportunity for us to celebrate the Barons' 2013 Southern League title, to visit Regions Field, one of the best facilities in all of minor league baseball, and for our Barons alumni to return to Birmingham, a city that has meant a great deal to White Sox success over the past three decades."
The Barons won the 2013 Southern League Championship in its inaugural season at Regions Field, which was recently named Ballpark of the Year by Baseballparks.com. Attendance during the team's championship run reached 410,186, the 4th-highest in franchise and league history. The Barons were named Southern league Organization of the Year and have been nominated for Minor League Organization of the Year.
"Coming off a magical year in the Inaugural Season at Regions Field, we're proud to welcome our longtime Major League affiliate to Birmingham," said Barons' General Manager Jonathan Nelson. "The White Sox have been a tremendous partner for us as we enter our 28th season as their Double-A Affiliate. It's an exciting moment for the city and our fans to bring a Major League team to Birmingham while watching past Barons compete against the next wave of stars."
The first game between the Barons and White Sox was played at Birmingham's historic Rickwood Field in 1986 followed by four additional meetings in 1991, 1998, 2000, 2003 and 2007 at the franchise's former home, Hoover Metropolitan Stadium.
Tickets to the exhibition are now available and can be purchased over the phone at 205-988-3200 or online at barons.com. Prices range between $14 and $28.