First Time For Arizona Diamondbacks In Mexico City
MEXICO CITY — For the first time, Mexico City will host a regular-season Major League Baseball (MLB) game. And Arizona will be represented with the Diamondbacks, one of the two teams playing there on April 18 and 19.
The Arizona Diamondbacks will face the San Diego Padres at the recently inaugurated Alfredo Harp Helú Stadium, home of Mexico City’s Diablos Rojos.
Mexican businessman Alfredo Harp is owner of Diablos Rojos and part of the San Diego MLB team ownership group. The Diablos Rojos stadium was completed last March and may hold 20,000 spectators.
The MLB and the Diamondbacks have held games in other Mexican cities, like Monterrey and Hermosillo, but it will be their first time in Mexico City for regular season.
Josh Rawitch is senior vice president of the Diamondbacks. He says the games reflect the relevance of Mexico has to the state.
“Mexico is probably one of the most important trade partners of the state of Arizona," Rawitch said.
“For us, to be able to bring the game to those people who may not be able to see it at Chase is a great way for us to expand our brand, and we know we have a lot of fans here in the States who’ve already mentioned to us that they want to come watch the games down there (in Mexico City)," said the executive.
Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador has openly supported baseball, his favorite sport, and even opened a presidential office for it. Rawitch says his support has been very important.
“I don't think you can overestimate how valuable it is to have someone who truly loves the sport, and who has done so much already for the sport within Mexico," Rawitch said.