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New. Blue. Tradition.04/02/2008 2:58 PM ET
KANSAS CITY -- The Kansas City Royals will open their 2008 home schedule on Tuesday, April 8 at 3:10 p.m. against the New York Yankees at Kauffman Stadium. Gates to the ballpark will open at 1 p.m. with pregame ceremonies scheduled to get underway at 2:30 p.m. FREE FOR FANS: All fans in attendance will receive a 2008 Royals Magnetic Schedule from Sprint Wireless. NEW. CROWNVISION DEBUT: The Royals usher in a new era of Royals baseball at Kauffman Stadium with the debut of CrownVision - a high definition video board that is 84 feet by 105 feet. CrownVision is the largest HD videoboard in the world! RENOVATIONS: The on-going renovations to Kauffman Stadium will continue throughout the 2008 season. On Opening Day, fans will get their first look at a new out-of-town scoreboard along the left-field wall, new home and visitors bullpens in the outfields, extra seating in the Crown Seats behind home plate as well as several structural changes to the exterior of the stadium. BLUE. ALUMNI ON-FIELD: The Royals will welcome home many alumni members representing teams from throughout the ballclub's four decades in Kansas City. Hall of Famer George Brett is scheduled to take the field for the ceremony as well as John Mayberry, John Wathan, Frank White and more. BLUE & GOLD FIRST PITCH: Kansas City salutes both sides of the border with a gridiron Ceremonial First Pitch. University of Missouri head football coach Gary Pinkel will deliver a special video message to fans, while Mark Mangino, head football coach at the University of Kansas, has the honor of tossing out the first pitch. BUCK O'NEIL LEGACY SEAT PROGRAM: The Buck O'Neil Legacy Seat program honors a member of the community who embodies Buck's vibrant spirit. Royals Senior Advisor to General Manager Dayton Moore and 2008 Royals Hall of Fame inductee Art Stewart will be the first to sit in "Buck's Seat" this season. Art, the Royals longest tenured associate, has been an integral part of the Royals staff since 1969 and is a friendly and well-respected face around Major League Baseball. TRADITION. STARTING LINEUP OF HEROES: The Royals starters will be paired with a starting lineup of children from Fort Riley, Kan., whose parents are currently serving in the United States Military. The children, service members and players will be introduced prior to the game. NATIONAL ANTHEM GOES COUNTRY: Country music sensation Emerson Drive will perform the National Anthem. The high-energy band, which hit the Country music scene with hits such as the Grammy-nominated "Moments" and "I Should be Sleeping," recently watched their album COUNTRIFIED climb the Country-music charts. A TRIBUTE TO THE RED, WHITE & BLUE: America's colors will be presented by the Kansas City, Mo., Police Department and the Kansas City, Mo., Fire Department. The men and women of Whiteman Air Force Base will also coordinate an A-10 flyover for a dramatic conclusion to the festivities.
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