Jacksonville Jumbo Shrimp cancels 2020 season

The announcement came after Minor League Baseball decided to end its season nationwide due to COVID-19 concerns.

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The Jacksonville Jumbo Shrimp announced the team will cancel its 2020 season based on a similar decision from Minor League Baseball issued June 30 due to health and safety concerns related to COVID-19.

Team administration announced the cancellation in a news release. It said 2020 will be the first year since 1969 that professional baseball will not be played in Jacksonville.

“The news that we will not have Jumbo Shrimp baseball at 121 Financial Ballpark is devastating,” Jumbo Shrimp owner and CEO Ken Babby said in the release.

“While we are disappointed there will be no Jumbo Shrimp baseball in 2020, we are looking forward to the many socially-distanced and safe events that continue to bring Affordable Family Fun to our community.”

Fans who purchased individual tickets for any game during the 2020 season will automatically receive a credit to their Jumbo Shrimp account, according to the news release.

Team leadership said credit can be used at any time for ticket purchases in the Jumbo Shrimp’s 2021 season.

A 2021 season schedule and promotional schedule will be announced before individual game tickets go on sale for the 2021 season.

The Jumbo Shrimp’s season was scheduled to start in April but was postponed due to COVID-19 capacity restrictions ordered by Mayor Lenny Curry and Gov. Ron DeSantis and because of health concerns for fans, players and staff.

The team signed a 13-year naming rights agreement in December with 121 Financial Credit Union, renaming the former Baseball Grounds of Jacksonville as 121 Financial Ballpark. The 2020 season was set to be the first year the agreement was in effect.

“We are incredibly disappointed and crushed to not have a Jumbo Shrimp baseball season at 121 Financial Ballpark in 2020,” said Harold Craw, Jumbo Shrimp executive vice president and general manager. 

“We still look at ourselves as leaders in part of the safe reopening of Jacksonville, and safety for our fans and staff will always be our top priority. Thanks to the trust instilled by the community, we are providing alternative affordable and fun outdoor and socially-distanced events at 121 Financial Ballpark. We will hopefully await Jumbo Shrimp baseball to return in 2021,” he said in the release.