The Waterloo Bucks are preparing to return to the field and play ball this summer.

Team officials announced Monday the Bucks are planning to begin their season on the road July 1, before hosting their home-opener on July 2. The 40-game regular-season schedule will include an even number home and road games, ending with the finale at home on Aug. 20.

Due to the coronavirus-delayed season, the Northwoods League created a new schedule for Waterloo. The Bucks will be part of a five-team Minnesota-Iowa "pod" that will also include: the Willmar Stingers, Mankato MoonDogs, Rochester Honkers and St. Cloud Rox.

"We're very excited to be able to bring Waterloo Bucks baseball back to the Cedar Valley for the 2020 season," Bucks General Manager Dan Corbin said. "Our entire organization has been working tirelessly with the Northwoods League, Waterloo Mayor (Quentin) Hart, Waterloo Leisure Services, the Black Hawk County Health Department and sheriff's office over the past few months to implement a plan that allows us to safely reopen Cost Cutters Field at Riverfront Stadium. We aim to provide a safe, fun baseball season this summer that will hopefully help bring some normalcy back to everybody's lives. Play ball!"

“Continuing efforts on the part of our Affiliates in Minnesota and Iowa to craft plans for safe operation in their respective locations in consultation with their state and local officials, along with the steps by those officials to open up their communities for larger gatherings, has made it possible to start another ‘pod’ in the Northwoods League footprint on July first,” said Northwoods League President and Commissioner Gary Hoover, who announced Monday that he's stepping down from the role to serve as the League’s General Counsel on an interim basis as part of a NWL front office reorganization. “This regional pod will bring the special brand of Northwoods League baseball back to those communities, but in a way that is consistent with everyone’s goal of doing so in a safe manner.”

Single game tickets for the 2020 Waterloo Bucks can be purchased online, by phone or in-person, starting Monday afternoon. Bucks ticket office is open each weekday from 10 AM to 5 PM. Corbin said seating capacities will be limited to follow social distancing, due to COVID-19 restrictions.

The Bucks have created a Riverfront Stadium Readiness Plan that is available to view on the team's COVID-19 webpage. Corbin is encouraging fans to read through the information and be prepared before visiting the ballpark this summer.

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