Despite loss, Charleston Dirty Birds have successful home opener at GoMart Ballpark

By Matthew Young, RealWV

CHARLESTON, W.Va. – While the Dirty Birds may have come up short in Tuesday’s home opener to the Lancaster Barnstormers by the score of eight to three, fans at GoMart Ballpark loudly cheered on the home team nonetheless. 

City of Charleston Mayor Amy Goodwin was in attendance to chat with fans, and America’s Got Talent winner and native West Virginian Landau Eugene Murphy, Jr. performed the National Anthem. West Virginia’s Governor and 2024 senatorial candidate Jim Justice – along with Babydog – was also at the ballpark to throw out the ceremonial first pitch. Governor Justice was a last minute stand-in for First Lady Cathy Justice, who was unable to make it to the game.

“Now, I’m gonna take about four warm-up pitches since it’s been a while since I’ve done this,” Justice joked while loosening up on the pitcher’s mound. 

After a few practice throws, both the governor and Babydog (with the governor’s assistance) each tossed one across home plate. 

“Babydog and I would like to say just this, really and truly it’s a great day to have a great time at the old ballpark, is it not?” Justice later told the RealWV. 

The governor and Babydog greeted fans and posed for pictures beside the Communities In Schools table on the main concourse for several innings, before heading off to another engagement. Representatives with Communities In Schools West Virginia were present during the game to host a school supply donation drive. Fans who donated school supplies were rewarded with a complimentary ticket to the Dirty Birds home game against the Lexington Counter Clocks on May 24. 

Also on-hand for opening day were members of the United Way of Central West Virginia, who were there to  sell tickets to the 2023 Great Rubber Duck Race. The Duck Race will take place on Sunday, July 2, during the Charleston Sternwheel Regatta. 

Having lost eight of their first nine games, the Dirty Birds are off to an auspicious start to the 2023 season, and sit in fourth place in the South Division. Currently, the Dirty Birds are 7.5 games behind the division-leading High Point Rockers. First baseman Bobby Bradley is fourth overall among Atlantic League hitters with three home runs. Thus far, the team has a total of seven home runs, and an overall league-worst batting average of .185. Dirty Birds pitchers have struck out 83.

After dropping Wednesday’s morning game seven to three, the Dirty Birds will finish up a three-game series with the Lancaster barnstormers Thursday night, before then welcoming the Lexington Counter Clocks to GoMart Ballpark on Friday night to begin another three-game. 

After $1 beer and Charlie’s Throwback Night on Thursday, the Dirty Birds have a weekend filled with family friendly crowd-pleasers. On Friday, a t-shirt giveaway will take place at the ballpark. It will also be Furry Friend Friday, where fans are welcome to bring their pets to enjoy the game. Saturday is First Responders Night complete with a fireworks celebration, and Sunday’s Mother’s Day destivities will feature a tote bag giveaway after Sunrise Yoga. 

For additional information about the Charleston Dirty Birds, including game schedule, ballpark promotions, and  tickets, visit


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