5 reasons to watch the Ogden Raptors play for the Pioneer League Championship

Tuesday , September 12, 2017 - 6:39 PM1 comment

BRETT HEIN, Standard-Examiner Staff

Editor’s Note: The Raptors have moved game time to 5 p.m. for Thursday’s Game 1 at Lindquist Field to avoid inclement weather. 

The Ogden Raptors are in the midst of a historic season. With a 7-3 win over Orem on Monday, the Raptors beat the Owlz two games to none and advanced to the Pioneer League Championship Series.

The Raptors are set to host the Great Falls Voyagers for Game 1 of the series at 5 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 14, at Lindquist Field.

Here are five reasons that fans big or small, die-hard or casual, can enjoy the game.

STORY & PHOTOS: Raptors top Orem to sweep South series

1. It’s the winningest team in Raptors history

A lot of good ball has been played in Ogden since the Raptors brought professional baseball back to the city in 1994. Corey Seager, former National League Rookie of the Year, and Cody Bellinger, this year’s frontrunner for the same award, very recently played at Lindquist Field.

But of all the good baseball to have been played in Ogden’s modern pro era (the team is 927-870 in 24 regular seasons), no team has won as much as the 2017 team.

The 2017 Raptors finished the regular season with a record of 47-29, besting the franchise’s previous best total by three wins. The team stormed back from an early August deficit to win the second-half title.

2. They hit lots of home runs

The home run is one of the greatest spectacle in sports, and, as it turns out, the Raptors hit a lot of them.

Ogden hit 104 homers in 76 regular-season games. Before this year, no team had ever hit more than 97 in a Pioneer League season.

In Monday’s series-clinching win in Orem, outfielder Romer Cuadrado bashed a grand slam that propelled the Raptors to the win.

3. Tickets are $5

Tickets for all seats at Lindquist Field on Thursday are $5. That’s more than half-off a usual, single-game reserved seat.

4. It’s only the 5th time the Raptors reached the championship series

Since their genesis in 1994, the Raptors have not won a Pioneer League title. The last time they reached the championship series was 2012, also against Great Falls, and it’s only the fifth time the franchise has reached the final series. It doesn’t happen every year.

Thursday’s home game gives Ogden the chance to take an important 1-0 series lead before traveling to Great Falls to finish the series.

5. It’s the last baseball game for 8 months

Lindquist Field hosted 128,348 fans across 38 regular-season games, easily leading the league for the 21st straight season. Add a pair of extra games relocated from Orem, plus the first-round playoff opener, and Ogden has hosted 41 professional baseball games this summer.

But this is it. The hot air will soon turn, the leaves will change and fall will be upon us. Thursday is the last gasp of summer for Northern Utah sports fans.

Contact Brett Hein at bhein@standard.net, follow him on Twitter @bhein3 and at facebook.com/brettheinwrites.

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