The Lakewood BlueClaws have canceled their 2020 season, the team confirmed Tuesday, following a decision by the whole of Minor League Baseball to set aside games after failing to find a path forward to safely play during the coronavirus pandemic.
Seasonal employees were notified Tuesday afternoon, one employee confirmed to Shorebeat.
“This is news that we had hoped we wouldn’t have to share, but unfortunately we will not be playing baseball at the Jersey Shore this summer,” said BlueClaws Team President Joe Ricciutti.
This decision was made “with the interests of fan, player, coach, and staff safety at the forefront,” the team said in a statement.
“We understand and cherish our place as a much-needed outlet for fun and entertainment across our communities, but we also understand and support the need to prioritize the public health crisis,” said Art Matin, the managing partner of BlueClaws ownership group Shore Town Baseball.
BlueClaws ticket package holders will be contacted by team staff to go over their options. Additionally, BlueClaws ticket staff will coordinate with group leaders that have booked 2020 outings at the stadium. Those that have tickets as part of a group outing should wait to hear from their group leader directly, the team advised.
Communication from BlueClaws staff members will begin on Wednesday morning, and the team asks that ticket holders “be patient as the BlueClaws work through outreach on an individual basis.”
The 2020 season would have been the 20th season in BlueClaws history with much planned to celebrate. The team has produced numerous stars for the Philadelphia Phillies, with which it is affiliated, and has led its league in attendance over the course of many of its campaigns. The team will shift many of these 20th season promotions into 2021.
“The BlueClaws have many amazing fans and partners and we appreciate each and every one of them,” said Martin. “We had lots of plans to celebrate our 20th season this year. Our message is simple – we want everyone to stay healthy and we can’t wait to open the gates and welcome people from across the Jersey Shore for some family entertainment and great baseball.”