The Tulsa Drillers will play their 2013 home opener at ONEOK Field on Thursday, April 11. The Drillers will host the San Antonio Missions (San Diego Padres) with first pitch in downtown Tulsa scheduled for 7:05PM.
The game marks the beginning of a six-game home stint that will run through Tuesday, April 16. The Drillers will host the Missions for a three-game set, April 11-13, followed by three games with the Corpus Christi Hooks (Houston Astros), April 14-16.
First pitch for the game on Sunday, April 14 will be at 2:05PM, while the game on Monday, April 15 will begin at 12:05PM. The other four games will have 7:05PM start times.
Individual tickets for the opener and the other five games in the stand are available over the internet at TulsaDrillers.com, in person at the ONEOK Field Ticket Office (201 N. Elgin Avenue) or over the telephone by calling (918)744-5901.
In addition to the home opener, the homestand will include the first Friday Night Fireworks Show of the year on Friday, April 12 and Drillers Build-a-Bears on Saturday, April 13.
In last season's home opener, Tulsa fell to San Antonio 2-1. The Drillers are only 1-2 in the three prior opening games at ONEOK Field.
Righthander Christian Bergman is the likely starting pitcher for the Drillers on Opening Night. Bergman is the reigning California League Pitcher of the Year, after going 16-5 with a 3.65 ERA for Class A Advanced Modesto in 2012. Lefthander Jose De Paula should get the start for San Antonio.
TOP PROSPECTS: Tulsa starting pitcher Chad Bettis is rated the #4 prospect in the Colorado Rockies minor league system by MLB.com. Bettis attended Texas Tech University and missed all of the 2012 season with a shoulder injury. He is scheduled to start Saturday's game against San Antonio.
Drillers outfielder Kyle Parker is rated the Rockies' #5 prospect by MLB. Parker attended Clemson University and also played quarterback for the Tigers and was named a Freshman All-American following the 2009 season.
MAJOR LEAGUE EXPERIENCE: Eddy Rodriguez, catcher for the San Antonio Missions, played in two games for the San Diego Padres last season. Rodriguez actually homered off of Cincinnati Reds ace Johnny Cueto in his first major league at-bat on August 2. Rich Dauer, the new manager of the Missions, played for the Baltimore Orioles from 1976-1985. He is one of a very few players to win both a College World Series (1973 & '74 U. of Southern California) and a MLB World Series (1983 Baltimore Orioles). He was recently a roving instructor in the Colorado Rockies organization.
DAY BASEBALL: The afternoon game on Monday, April 15 is the first of six weekday day games for the Drillers at ONEOK Field this season.
OPENING NIGHT: Opening Night festivities will begin at 5:00PM and will include live music from the Jambalaya Jass Band. The 2nd Annual Opening Night Parade will take place along Greenwood and Archer Avenues beginning at 6:00PM and in-game entertainment will feature Tulsa's own Myron Noodleman. The Liberty Bowl Champion University of football team will be honored prior to the game with Head Coach Bill Blankenship throwing the ceremonial first pitch. American Idol contestant and Broken Arrow native Kayden Stephenson will throw a ceremonial first pitch as well. Hornsby, the Drillers mascot, will also have a BIG surprise for all fans during the opener!
TULSA DRILLERS SCHEDULE/PROMOTIONS (April 11-16):
Thursday, April 11. . . San Antonio Missions (7:05PM) - Gates Open at 6:00PM
It's the most anticipated night of the season as the Drillers return to ONEOK Field for their first home game of the 2013 season! Opening Night festivities are presented by Allstate - Jim Woods & Associates, FOX 23 and KRMG AM740 & FM 102.3 and will begin at 5:00PM with live music from the Jambalaya Jass Band outside of the stadium's Oil Derrick Entrance.
The 2nd Annual Opening Night Parade will depart from the OETA building on Greenwood Avenue at 6:00PM. It will feature classic movie cars, the Tulsa Fire Department, an Old Urban Trolley, vehicles from local Blue Dome District restaurants and bars, a Mickey Mantle replica car, the Knights of Columbus 4th Degree Honor Guard, local Little League Teams supported by the Green Country Chevy Dealers, Tulsa 66ers Cheerleaders, Drillers Season Ticket Holders of the Year, Drillers players and coaches, and of course Hornsby! The parade will travel south on Greenwood and turn west onto Archer Street before concluding at the Oil Derrick Entrance of ONEOK Field.
Once inside ONEOK Field, fans will see Liberty Bowl Champion TU Head Football Coach Bill Blankenship and players, along with Kayden Stephenson (American Idol contestant), throw out the game's first pitches. The First Fruits of Praise from New Creation Worship Assembly will sing the national anthem. Stephenson will also perform "Take Me Out to the Ballgame" during the Seventh-Inning Stretch and Myron Noodleman returns to entertain fans of all ages during the game. Finally, Hornsby has a BIG surprise planned for Opening Night that fans will not want to miss!
5,000 fans will receive rally towels, courtesy of Allstate - Jim Woods & Associates.
2013 SCHEDULE MAGNETS
Fans will also receive 2013 Drillers Schedule Magnets as they exit the stadium, courtesy of Mazzio's.
And if the parade, music, giveaways, and special guests of Opening Night wasn't already enough, April 11 is also a Thirsty Thursday, with $1 Budweiser's, Bud Light's (12 oz. servings) and Pepsi products (16 oz. servings)!