While the Minnesota Twins will start their new season on April 1, the St. Paul Saints will have to wait a little longer before swinging a bat in anger.
The Saints were due to make their debut as the Twins' AAA affiliate on April 6, but the 2021 Triple-A season has been pushed back a month as a precaution with COVID-19 still widespread, albeit reducing amid the vaccine rollout.
Instead, the Saints will start their season on Tuesday, May 4 against the Omaha Storm Chasers, with the home opener happening a week later against the Iowa Cubs.
The overall Triple-A season will be reduced as well from 142 games to 120, with the original end date of Sept. 19 staying intact.
MLB said delaying the start of the Triple-A season was "a prudent step to complete the Major League and Minor League seasons as safely as possible."
CHS Field will also be an alternate training site for the Twins, which it was in 2020, as the Twins prepare for the new season.
“While we are eager to begin our first year as the Twins Triple-A Affiliate, we understand and appreciate what Major League Baseball is doing by delaying the start of our season by a month.” said Saints Executive Vice President/General Manager Derek Sharrer.
"We look forward to working with the Twins as their alternate training site in April as we prepare to safely host fans when our 2021 season begins in May."
The Saints are planning to host fans again in 2021, with the team allowed 1,500 fans into CHS Field during the shortened 2020 season, when COVID rates were low in Minnesota.