After a disappointing postseason, a quiet offseason, and a 2-4 road trip to kick off the year, the Indians return to Progressive Field on Friday for the 2018 home opener. Although the weather looks sketchy, the plan is to play ball on Friday against the Royals as the Tribe attempts to get back to the World Series and win the franchise's first championship since 1948. Going to the game? Here's everything you need to know.
Who's on the mound?
The Tribe will go with Carlos Carrasco, who is 9-6 with a 3.58 ERA in 22 career games against Kansas City. The Royals will start Danny Duffy, who lost in his only start of the season to the White Sox.
What's new at Progressive Field?
The ballpark extended its safety net to the far ends of each dugout. The netting now extends from Section 164 down to the third-base line to Section 140 down to the first-base line.
Tired of having your phone die halfway through the game? To combat that issue, 72 phone-charging lockers come equipped with four charging cords that are compatible with most models. There will also be 45 new storage lockers to stash away any extra belongings or souvenirs you may accumulate during the game.
What about the food?
All your favorite local eats will be there as well as some new tasty additions.
- Flamethrower: Pork belly and tender pulled pork sandwich topped with bacon jam, green apple slaw and Flamin' Hot Cheetos (served in Terrace Club and at Throwing Smoke, section 160)
- Cheesy Bacon Melt: Melt sandwich topped with mac and cheese and crispy bacon. (Served at Melt Bar and Grilled, section 113)
- Pizza Logs: Three deep-fried pizza sticks with cheese and pepperoni (Served at Ballpark Classic, section 541 and 559)
- Torta De Pollo: Achiote chicken strip sandwich with lettuce, sliced tomato and chipotle mayo (Served in the Home Plate Club)
Restaurants and bars will be opening earlier than usual to kick off home opener celebrations. Winking Lizard on Huron Road will open at 9 a.m., instead of its usual 11 a.m. schedule.
General manager Adam Wilson said he stocked up on every product and is bringing in extra staff to take care of the crowds. He opens the cold weather won't deter fans from venturing to downtown.
"When the weather’s nice people just come out. It’s like a party, like Mardi Gras. People come downtown to walk around and have a good time. When it’s cold people tend to stay closer to home,” Wilson said.
What you are allowed to bring inside Progressive Field:
- Cell phones and similar devices
- Small bags
- Service dogs
- Small single-serving juice boxes and other small items
What you can't bring inside Progressive Field:
- Bags exceeding 16x16x18 inches
- Alcoholic beverages and illegal drugs
- Cans, glass, squeeze bottles and thermos bottles
- Hard-sided coolers
The following parking bans will be in effect on Friday, April 6 from noon to 12 a.m.
- East 4th Street from Prospect Avenue to Huron Road, both sides
- West Huron Road from Ontario Street to West Superior Avenue
- East 9th Street from Carnegie Avenue to Superior Avenue, both sides
- Prospect Avenue from East 14th Street to Ontario Street, both sides
- Huron Road between Ontario Street and Prospect Avenue, both sides
- Carnegie Avenue from East 14th Street to East 9th Street, both sides
- The Warehouse District Parking Ban will be in effect from 8:00 p.m. – 4:00 a.m.
If you're driving and parking downtown, be prepared for parking lots to fill up quickly. Closer to the stadium, fees can go up to $40 or $50. One tool visitors can use is Cleveland Parking Finder. It allows you to search the street, neighborhood and date of a specific area you want to park near.
A warm thought for a cold day
If you need to get hyped before the game, watch Edwin Encarnacion hit an inside-the-park home run against the Angels.
Will Good Morning Cleveland be broadcasting from Progressive Field tomorrow?
Your bet your bobblehead we will.