Rickwood Field Crowd Paid Tribute to Willie Mays During Minor League Game

A long standing ovation was held after news of the baseball great's passing.
Rickwood Field crowd, courtesy of the MLB X account.
Rickwood Field crowd, courtesy of the MLB X account. /
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On Tuesday night, baseball legend Willie Mays died at the age of 93. The tributes have poured in for the Hall of Famer since the news of his passing, but perhaps none were more fitting than a standing ovation at Rickwood Field.

As part of Major League Baseball's honoring of Rickwood Field this week, a minor league game was held on Tuesday evening between the Double-A affiliates of the Chicago White Sox and Tampa Bay Rays. The White Sox side donned Birmingham Barons uniforms in honor of the team that called Rickwood Field home for a season, and the Rays the uniforms of the Montgomery Gray Sox.

News of Mays's death broke in the midst of Montgomery's 6-5 win. An announcement was made over the PA that also paid tribute to the baseball great's life, leading to a resounding ovation from the crowd that lasted nearly a full minute.

A special moment to occur at Rickwood Field, where Mays spent the 1948 season as a member of the Barons.

Mays was a 24-time All-Star and Hall of Famer, universally viewed as one of the true giants of baseball lore. Tributes will continue to pour in, especially on Thursday, when the San Francisco Giants and St. Louis Cardinals will play an MLB game on the Rickwood Field diamond.

Liam McKeone


Liam McKeone is a senior writer for the Breaking and Trending News team at Sports Illustrated. He has been in the industry as a content creator since 2017, and prior to joining SI in May 2024, McKeone worked for NBC Sports Boston and The Big Lead. In addition to his work as a writer, he has hosted the Press Pass Podcast covering sports media and The Big Stream covering pop culture. A graduate of Fordham University, he is always up for a good debate and enjoys loudly arguing about sports, rap music, books and video games. McKeone has been a member of the National Sports Media Association since 2020.