- Associated Press - Thursday, January 27, 2011

TAMPA, FLA. (AP) - The Tampa Bay Rays will open their 2011 season on a new AstroTurf field.

The Rays announced the change Thursday and said the installation of the new turf to their 1.1 million square foot Tropicana Field surface has already begun.

Team officials say it will be completed for the Rays’ April 1 home opener against Baltimore.

The Rays’ new surface is AstoTurf GameDay Grass 3D60H. AstroTurf is the official synthetic turf for Major League Baseball.

Tampa Bay has played on synthetic turf surfaces since their inaugural season in 1998. It installed FieldTurf in 2000 and last upgraded it in 2007.

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