KODAK, Tenn. (WATE) — The Tennessee Smokies are back on the diamond for the 2022 season. Some fans say they couldn’t be more excited.
“Well, he (son) wants to play. He wants to start playing baseball so we figured we’d give him a first-hand look at what’s going on. Wished the weather would cooperate a little bit,” said fan Christopher Carver.
Despite a chilly and rainy day, fans turned out for Opening Day. Some fans believe there’s no better day than Opening Day at Smokies Stadium.
Keith Lyon brought his wife and his son Jake to Friday’s game against the Chattanooga Lookouts.
He said, “This is Jake’s favorite place to be outside of church. This is the only thing he asked to do for his life. He’ll even ask for Smokies tickets for Christmas.”
“I’ve never been to a Smokies game. I’ve never been to Tennessee so this is a fun experience,” Megan Kirk said.
Woody Jackson is 100 years old and came out Friday to support the Smokies in their new campaign.
He said, “Since they started playing 20, 30 years ago. We came to the first game when they started 30 years ago.”
Jackson has many great memories of Smokies games but one will always stand out.
He recalled, “When they asked me to come and throw out the first pitch two years ago.”
Some Cubs prospects are returning to the Smokies this year like Chase Strumpf, Christopher Morel, and Cam Balego. The fans are looking forward to what the whole team can accomplish this year.
As for the plan to relocate the Smokies to downtown Knoxville, opinions from fans vary.
“Stay where they’re at to be honest. I think it seems more feasible to get here versus downtown. Downtown is just a little too crazy,” Claire Carver said.
Lyon added, “It’s going to be good for Knoxville. As far as the financing behind it, I’m not sure but it’s going to be good for Knoxville. It’s going to be good for him more than anything.”
The Smokies continue opening weekend against the Chattanooga Lookouts Saturday night at 7:00 and the teams will play each other again Sunday afternoon.