Marlins Defeat Braves in Historic Fort Bragg Game

On Sunday evening, the Miami Marlins defeated the Atlanta Braves 5-2 and both teams made history by playing the first ever regular-season professional game of any kind on an active military base.

The two teams played at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, and the game was ESPN’s Sunday Night Baseball game of the week. The game was also the first Major League Baseball game played in the state of North Carolina. Nearly every fan who attended the game was a resident of Fort Bragg.

The game was scoreless until the Marlins plated two runs off Braves starter Matt Wisler in the top half of the fifth inning. The Marlins, who are contending for a playoff spot, tacked on three much-needed insurance runs as starter Adam Conley and relievers David Phelps and newly-acquired Fernando Rodney shut out the Braves through eight innings. Miami closer A.J. Ramos struggled in the bottom of the ninth, as he is prone to doing when coming on in non-save situations, giving up two runs.

 

The 82nd Airborne did a flyover before the game:

 

 

 

Major League Baseball presented an unoccupied “chair of honor” dedicated to POWs/MIA who sacrificed for America.

Major League Baseball built a 12,500-seat ballpark, Fort Bragg Field, on the North Carolina base for the game, which was  “created in a joint effort by MLB and the MLB Players Association to honor” America’s servicemen and servicewomen.

Marlins outfielder Christian Yelich, who has a 24-year-old brother in the Marines, said, “We try to do as much as we can, for the military, for our veterans.”

The Braves’s A.J. Pierzynski, whose high school teammate is now stationed at Fort Bragg, told MLB.com, “These military guys that we’re going to be around are the real heroes who give us an opportunity to do what we do every day.”

”It truly is an honor to be able to be a part of something like this,” Pierzynksi added.

The field will remain on the base and reportedly be “converted to a permanent softball facility for the soldiers and their families.”

Players from both teams spent time with the troops before the game. Here are some scenes from the event:

 


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