Savannah Bananas play first home game of 2023 season

Published: Feb. 25, 2023 at 10:01 PM EST
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SAVANNAH, Ga. (WTOC) - An exciting night at Historic Grayson Stadium Saturday as the Savannah Bananas played the first home game of their 2023 world tour.

From the moment the Bananas took to the field, fans couldn’t contain their excitement for the team’s return to the Hostess City.

Following last year’s season that saw the team go viral, the Bananas are embarking on a cross-country tour bringing Banana Ball and some former Major League players to the rest of the country.

“It gives us total freedom. A couple nights ago, we had Johnny Damon play for us. Where will you ever see that again? We’ve got guys who can do anything they want because they’re a part of Banana Ball and that’s the fun,” said Bananas President Jared Orton.

The team will play 30 games in Savannah as part of the tour.

Last season, the team announced their split from the Coastal Plain League, opting for year round Banana Ball.

“It’s a two hour time limit. Fan catches foul balls for an out. There’s no bunting. There’s no walks. There’s no mound visits. It’s like every moment matters,” said Orton.

Fans say they’re excited for the changes.

“I think it’s great. Looking forward to-- MLB is doing changes too,” said fan Jane Hamill.

“I think it’s great for Savannah. I think it’s great for tourism. People are coming from all over to see the Bananas play so I think they’re doing a really great job,” said fan Mara Seales.

So far this tour, the team has played in front record crowds in Florida.

Team officials say demand is high with half a million people on the waiting list for tickets.

The home opener was sold out.

“We’ve met people from California and Texas and different countries and everyone’s descending on Savannah to see this crazy thing that it happening at Grayson Stadium,” said Orton.

The Bananas hoping to peel away from conventional baseball and bring the so-called party to the Hostess City and across the country.