Boston Red Sox stars take in sights of London as they enjoy open-top bus tour of the capital ahead of clash with New York Yankees at London Stadium
- Boston Red Sox players took part in an open-top bus tour of London’s sights
- The baseball team flew in to the UK on a luxury Boeing 777 costing $500,000
- They play New York Yankees at London Stadium and MLB hope to reach new fans
Boston Red Sox stars enjoyed a day taking in London’s landmarks ahead of their matches with New York Yankees at London Stadium this weekend.
The baseball superstars and their families boarded a London bus to tour all the tourist hot-spots in the capital.
The two Major League Baseball teams will play each other at the London Stadium, which has been transformed into a 60,000-seater ballpark.
Boston Red Sox stars (l-r) Hector Velazquez, Sandy Leon, Marcus Walden, Jackie Bradley Jr., Brock Holt and Andrew Benintendi pose before going on an open-top bus tour of London
Marcus Walden and his partner take a selfie as they take in the sights around the capital
Their will be two matches staged between the fierce rivals, to be held on June 29 and 30.
The MLB London Series 2019 will be the first regular season games played in Europe, and at a venue which took centre stage for the Olympics six years ago.
MLB Europe’s vice president of international strategic development Charlie Hill believes it provides ‘an amazing first step’ for the organisation’s continued drive for growth.
‘It is an important part of us trying to grow the sport internationally. Bringing these two iconic teams to a world city like London speaks to the ambition to make sure that our sport is reaching new audiences,’ Hill told PA.
Boston Red Sox are in town to play New York Yankees at London Stadium
MLB hopes staging a game in London will help broaden its appeal to new audience
There will be two games played, on Juen 29 and June 30, with the London Stadium adapted
‘Europe is a really important place for us to grow – bringing this game to London is an amazing first step in that journey.
‘There is an existing fan community which has been waiting quite a long time for Major League Baseball to come and play, and we know they are extremely excited.
‘As much as that group is excited we are also looking at the casual fans who have heard about baseball, have maybe seen it when they go on holiday but have not had a chance to get to really know the sport in depth.’
London has hosted several successful NFL matches, with more scheduled.
The capital now follows Mexico, Japan, Australia and Puerto Rico as an international destination for the MLB. Hill is confident the event will prove a successful venture.
‘It speaks to the intent the league has to continue to grow the sport internationally,’ he said.
‘We have a great track record of bringing big events to Asia and Mexico most recently.
‘This is new for us in the UK, in that we have not done this before, we are not as established as we are in those other markets.
‘So to make a first impression is really important – to do that with arguably our biggest two teams and certainly the biggest rivalry in baseball, maybe even in sports, it is such an exciting way to make a first introductory step to new markets.’