Thursday is the day that most baseball fans have been waiting months for. Opening Day for the Cincinnati Reds has finally arrived.
The gates opened at 11:40 a.m., two hours earlier than they normally do. The fan zone is featuring concerts with My Sister Sarah and Pete Wagner Dixieland Band.
The Duke Energy Center is also handing out rally towels.
Retired Cincinnati Police Chief Tom Streicher will throw out the ceremonial first pitch and the National Anthem will be sung by Grammy-nominated singer Brian McNight.
The Reds are opening the season with five players on the disabled list for the first time since 2007.
Just like any other Reds game, you are allowed to bring bags, backpacks and purses. However, bags can't be bigger than 16 X 16 X 8.
Coolers are also permitted as long as they are soft sided and all belongings are subject to search. You can also bring in signs and banners, but noisemakers are prohibited.
Opening Day is arriving with a little extra fanfare for the Cincinnati Reds this year. They've got a division title and an MVP to celebrate.
And they start the season against one of the teams that's in position to take it away.
The Reds and the Milwaukee Brewers worked out at Great American Ball Park on Wednesday with snow in the air - a numbing reminder that the cold reality of the regular season was one day away.
The forecast for Thursday's opener is dry with temperatures in the 40s.
Reds right-hander Edinson Volquez will face Milwaukee's Yovani Gallardo. The Reds plan to honor National League MVP Joey Votto before the game. They will also honor former manager Sparky Anderson, who died in November.
The Reds made several anticipated moves on Wednesday to get down to the 25-man roster limit, putting four pitchers and outfielder Fred Lewis on the 15-day disabled list. All were injured during spring training.
Starters Johnny Cueto and Homer Bailey are on throwing programs because of shoulder issues and are expected back in April. Relievers Jose Arredondo and Jared Burton have sore pitching shoulders. Lewis strained muscles in his right side.
Right-hander Jordan Smith will take Burton's spot in the bullpen.
For information on all road closures during Opening Day, CLICK HERE.
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The Reds starting lineup is as follows:
- Drew Stubbs, CF
- Brandon Phillips, 2B
- Joey Votto, 1B
- Scott Rolen, 3B
- Jay Bruce, RF
- Jonny Gomes, LF
- Ramon Hernandez, C
- Paul Janish, SS
- Edinson Volquez, P