BILLINGS – The Billings Mustangs open their 67th season Friday night, and fans will notice a couple of differences.
First pitch in the majority of games this year is now 6:35 p.m. instead of 7:05 p.m. The Mustangs host Idaho Falls in the opening series, with the Chukars now in the North Division after the Helena Brewers moved south to Colorado Springs. But most noticeably, Dehler Park has a brand new toy.
A much bigger video board will be in use for the first time Friday. It now takes up the entire 20′ x 36′ display in right center field – more than three times as big as before. It’s just another reason players new and old consider Dehler the best stadium around.
“I’m blown away honestly,” said first-year outfielder Quin Cotton. “It’s a beautiful town. It’s a beautiful park here – we’ve got a great field – so we’re really excited to get to work.”
“Probably the No. 1 factor that we have here and that you don’t get anywhere else is the fans,” said returning pitcher Andrew McDonald. “We have absolute diehards here, and that’s what we all still talk about is. For the new guys coming in, they ask, ‘How’s the fan base?’ We just tell them it’s incredible.”
“It’s definitely without a doubt one of the top minor league facilities,” echoed first-year manager Bryan LaHair, who was the Mustangs’ hitting coach in 2018. “We are blessed to have this place, and I wouldn’t want to be anywhere else at this level. I hope this park and this team stays here for years to come. It’s a great place to help these kids grow.”