World Leaders Force Jays To Play Home Dates In Philly

MLB has moved the scheduled Blue Jays/Phillies series out of Toronto to avoid conflicting with the G20 summit. Jays fans are, shall we say, royally pissed.

Toronto was psyched for interleague play this year, specifically a late June series with the Phillies, which would see Roy Halladay return to the Rogers Centre for the first time since being traded. You know who didn't have that series circled on their calendar? The movers and shakers of the G20 summit, which was scheduled for the same time, at the Convention Centre next door to the ballpark.

Because of security and crowd control concerns, MLB has moved the series to Citizens Bank Park. The Blue Jays will still be the home team, at least on the field: the DH will be used, and they'll bat last.

Off the field, it's still unclear. MLB's mum so far on the financials, though they have said Philadelphia's expenses will be covered before they figure out how to divvy up the gate. But losing money isn't what's galling Jays fans (they're used to it); it's forfeiting the competitive advantage, and the chance to welcome back the former face of the franchise.

As Drunk Jays Fans points out, hurricanes forced a Cubs/Astros series out of Houston. They played the game at Miller Park, a neutral site. Was this even considered in this case? Coca-Cola Field, right across the lake in Buffalo, will be vacant and seats 18,000. That's easily enough to accommodate an average Toronto crowd this season. And sure, they'd probably draw more than that for Halladay's return, but there'd be a hell of a lot more Jays fans in 18,000-capacity Coca-Cola Field than among the 43,000-plus at Citizen Bank Park.

Don't feel too bad, Toronto fans. There's still the chance you could host a Halladay start in the World Series, right?

Jays - Phillies series moving to Philadelphia [Globe and Mail]
The Summit Series Heads To Philadelphia [Drunk Jays Fans]