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Angels to play Indians in ‘Little League Classic’ in 2021

August 22, 2021 game will be televised by ESPN

Chicago Cubs v Pittsburgh Pirates Photo by Elsa/Getty Images

The Angels will play a game next season in one of the best settings in baseball, as part of the Little League Classic on August 22, 2021 at Bowman Field in Williamsport, Pennsylvania.

That game will be against the Indians, the final game of a weekend series after the first two games in Cleveland. ESPN ‘Sunday Night Baseball’ will televise the series finale.

“Investing in the future of our game has always been a central focus for our organization,” Angels owner Arte Moreno said in a statement. “We are honored to participate in this special event that unites MLB’s brightest stars with the game’s next generation.”

As part of the weekend, Angels and Indians players earlier on Sunday will attend Little League World Series games, then in turn a big chunk of the crowd for the Angels-Indians game will be Little League players and their families.

The average crowd for the previous three Little League Classic games — Cardinals-Pirates in 2017, Mets-Phillies in 2018, and Cubs-Pirates in 2019 — was 2,509 at Bowman Field, which opened in 1926, making for one of the most intimate settings in sports.

Angels manager Joe Maddon helmed the Cubs during the Little League Classic last year, and was born in Hazelton, a little over an hour from Williamsport.

“You get off that airplane, and the kids greet you. It’s so grassroots, it’s so original, so organic,” Maddon said Sunday. “It’s gonna be really exciting for everybody here. It’s spectacular. The fact that it’s in Pennsylvania, right where I grew up, I feel like I’m at home. It makes it even more special for me.”

The planned 2020 game in Williamsport between the Red Sox and Orioles was canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Angels were last on ESPN ‘Sunday Night Baseball’ on June 23, 2019, when they played the Cardinals during Albert Pujols’ return to St. Louis.