Major League Baseball is making good on a promise to bring the Midsummer Classic back to the Atlanta area.
On Thursday, the league announced that Truist Park will host the 2025 All-Star Game. The Atlanta Braves were originally supposed to host the festivities in 2021, but under significant corporate, political and public pressure, MLB relocated the game to Denver.
At the time, Republican-led majorities in Georgia’s state legislature passed the Election Integrity Act, a law that was believed to severely impact the ability of Black and Latino citizens of the state to vote in future elections. With companies threatening to move their business out of state and comments from President Joe Biden suggesting that he’d support the event’s relocation, MLB did just that two months before baseball’s best would have come to Atlanta.
A sporting event returning to its original host city after being forced to move elsewhere isn’t unheard of. In 2019, the NBA made the decision to pull its exhibition weekend out of Charlotte in response to the passage of North Carolina’s Public Facilities Privacy &Act. House Bill 2, or “the bathroom bill” as it became known as, was enacted to override any local anti-discrimination ordinances, and was primarily used to compel public facilities such as schools and stadiums to ensure that single-gender restrooms were only used by people whose sex that’s listed on their birth certificates to use them. That All-Star event went to New Orleans but the NBA’s make-good for Charlotte was giving the city the 2021 event. (The law itself was repealed.)
The good news for the Braves comes a day after it was discovered that Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway is investing $8 million into the team, a publicly traded one on the stock exchange.
MLB continues its trend of awarding the event to teams and cities with new or revamped stadiums, which means several teams haven’t hosted the game since opening their facilities in the late 1990s or 2000s. The New York Yankees hosted the 2008 edition as a farewell to the original Yankee Stadium but have yet to host one in the new building.
The World Series champion Texas Rangers will host the game in 2024 in their four-year-old Globe Life Field. With the Atlanta region set to host its third Midsummer Classic, the Philadelphia Phillies were awarded the game in 2026. The Tampa Bay Rays are the only team that has yet to host the All-Star Game as the team’s quest to replace the undesirable Tropicana Field continues.