ROUND ROCK (KXAN) — It’s a special Opening Day for Round Rock’s Minor League Baseball team, the Round Rock Express, as they celebrate their 20th season Tuesday.
As part of their milestone year, the club is returning to its Triple-A affiliation with the Houston Astros, their parent club from 2000 to 2010. The Express spent the previous eight years as the Triple-A affiliate for the Texas Rangers.
“It’s never been as exciting as going to the World Series Champs from 2017,” Express Team President Chris Almendarez said.
Not only are the Astros one of the best teams in Major League Baseball, but the club boasts one of the best farm systems. Express fans will get a great look at the soon-to-be stars of the sport.
The top minor league pitching prospect, Forrest Whitley, will be starting on the mound for the Express Tuesday night. The San Antonio native will get to experience a homecoming of sorts playing only an hour and a half away from his childhood home.
As part of the home-opening celebrations, the team also unveiled a new logo and has returned to their original navy blue along with a new shade of deep red and silver.
Dell Diamond also received an upgrade, installing all new seats and new ticket windows near the front of the ballpark.
The organization has been working around the clock over the past several weeks to get ready for the season debut. Almendarez compares it to inviting guests over to your house for a party. He hopes Express fans enjoy the hard work of his staff.
“What’s our why? Why do we get up everyday and do what we do? We’re very blessed to everyday be able to spark joy in people’s lives,” Almendarez said.
The Opening Day game will start just after 7 p.m. as the team plays a 5-game series against the Nashville Sounds at Dell Diamond. Fireworks and other festivities are scheduled for the special day. Tickets range from $8 to $18. You can buy them here.
KXAN Digital Photojournalist Todd Bailey contributed to this article.