Breaking News
More () »

Dunedin finding success pinch-hitting for the city of Toronto

The Blue Jays are 7-4 at TD Ballpark and will remain in town until the end of May.

DUNEDIN, Fla. — UPDATE: The Blue Jays are ending their stint in Florida and returning to Buffalo on June 1.

Previous story below:

In downtown Dunedin, the cars almost kiss the crosswalks.

The cozy confines provide one of the most unusual backdrops for a Major League Baseball team.

"Our locals are all really proud that they can tell their friends, 'you wouldn't believe what's happening in our city,'" Dunedin mayor Julie Bujalski said.

She has been blown away by the month of baseball in town.

With stadium attendance maxed out at 1,500 fans, this is one of the most intimate settings to watch the pros play.

"You're used to seeing minor league baseball. You're used to seeing spring training. You see a couple of innings of every player and now it means something," Shelby Nelson, Blue Jays director of Florida operations, said.

Whether it is the world’s greatest player in Mike Trout smacking home runs into the back of an elementary school, or Vladimir Guerrero Jr. hitting three bombs in one game.

You had the best seat in the house.

"It was kind of a wow moment, like wow, we're really here," Nelson said.

Now, this was quite the assignment for TD Ballpark.

"Yeah, there were a lot of uh oh (moments)," Nelson said laughing.

Turning this facility into a suitable MLB stadium took a lot of work, but they are pulling it off.

"We did brand new LED lights," Nelson said. "On top of that, we added four additional light poles on a temporary basis that are much higher."

Nothing is official, but the Blue Jays are most likely leaving town at the beginning of June.

Bujalski is hoping Toronto’s 7-4 home record can provide some proof of product to stay a little longer.

"People have laughed at me, but, you know, if you're on a winning streak, you don't want to change certain things," the mayor said.

No matter what, Dunedin will be home to the Blue Jays for at least another 20-plus years as their Spring Training home.

But for now, you can still be a part of history.

"I think we need to get in the Guinness Book of World Records," Bujalski said.

The Rays play in Dunedin from May 21-24.

What other people are reading right now:

►Breaking news and weather alerts: Get the free 10 Tampa Bay app

Stay In the Know! Sign up now for the Brightside Blend Newsletter