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After two rainouts, fans finally back at PNC Field

Apr. 4—MOOSIC — The third time was finally the charm for the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders, with the rain finally holding off and baseball finally played for the first time this year at PNC Field.

After inclement weather wiped out the first two days of the RailRiders' first home series of the year, the team welcomed fans to PNC Field Thursday night.

It wasn't exactly a picturesque evening at the ballpark, but compared to the driving rain and whipping wind that dashed the first two games of the week, it was just fine for the fans who came out to PNC Field.

"It doesn't bother me, I'm just happy to be here," said Christopher Algard, who came from Bloomsburg to check out Opening Night.

Algard was one of a small group of fans who were ready to go when the gates first opened at 5:30 p.m., about an hour before PNC Field saw its first pitch thrown of the year. Many fans began to make their way in after the gates opened, opting to wait in the warmth of their cars before entering the ballpark.

The RailRiders opened up their home schedule against the Syracuse Mets, the Triple-A club in the New York Mets' organization.

As is the case when a team like the Mets comes to town, a fair bit of orange and blue could be found in the midst of the RailRiders hats and jerseys.

Algard was one such case, clad in Mets gear on his way through the gates.

"I'm excited to see Luisangel Acuña," Algard said, referring to the Triple-A Mets second baseman and younger brother of MLB superstar Ronald Acuña, Jr. "And Drew Gilbert, because I'm a [University of] Tennessee fan."

On their way in, fans stopped to partake in the old traditions of a game day at PNC Field: a soft pretzel, a look through the RailRiders team store and, of course, a picture with RailRiders mascot Champ, who could be seen walking just about every inch of the ballpark taking pictures and greeting fans.

It wasn't just locals populating the seats at PNC Field either — just ask Brian Scott and David Bloomer, who came from New Jersey for Thursday's game.

Bloomer said that he'd been coming to games at PNC Field since before the Yankees were even here, going back to the days of the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Red Barons in the Philadelphia Phillies farm system.

Scott said he'd been coming to RailRiders games since 2018, and was excited to see young prospects Carlos Narvaez and Everson Pereira in Thursday's game.

The duo made sure to keep an eye on the weather heading into the week, and managed to avoid making the trip for Tuesday only to arrive at a rainout.

"We were going to come Tuesday but we didn't buy tickets ahead of time, because of the weather," Bloomer said. "We couldn't come yesterday, but that got rained out too, so it worked out for us."