Historical MLB opening day stats from sellouts to record holders


Ah, the eve of opening day!

Spring is in the air and regular season baseball has risen once again.

This year, reminiscent of 2023, all 30 Major League Baseball teams will take the field on the same day. In anticipation of the long-awaited and jampacked day of baseball, here are some opening day fun facts to take with you, beer in hand, to the designated ballpark of your team.


(The Cleveland Guardians have sold out opening day for 31 years straight. (Getty Images))

The Cleveland Guardians have sold out every opening day since 1994

Since the Cleveland Guardians ballpark opened in 1994, the team has sold out opening day every year, including 2024. This year marks the 31st year the Guardians, formerly the Indians, have sold out the first game of the season.

The ball club saw a dramatic increase in attendance in 2023. However, their overall wins were disappointing for fans. The team lost 16 more games in 2023 than in the 2022 season.

Though the Guardians haven’t won a World Series since 1948, Cleveland fans are forever hopeful and buying up tickets quickly.

Speaking of… the Guardians sold out opening day in 2013 in 6 minutes

On Feb. 24, 2013, the Guardians posted on X that they sold out opening day in just six minutes.

The tweet on their official MLB account read, “Our home opener sold out in 6 MINUTES! Thanks for your support, Tribe fans!”

The team from over a decade ago included athletes Trevor Bauer, Yan Gomes, Carlos Santana, Jason Kipnis, Nick Swisher and Michael Brantley, among others.

The Cincinnati Reds sold out 2004 opening day in 16 minutes

While 10 minutes less impressive than 6 minutes, the Cincinnati Reds sold out their 2004 opening day against the Chicago Cubs in just 16 minutes. This was the fastest sellout record in Reds history. Last year, the Reds didn’t sell out the first game until just a few days shy of their first regular season pitch.


Cincinnati Reds logo

The Cincinnati Reds sold out opening day in 2004 in 16 minutes. (Jamie Sabau/Getty Images)

Opening day in 2023 saw the shortest games since the early 1900s

In 2023, the MLB adopted a new pitch clock rule which ​​gives pitchers 15 seconds between deliveries.

On opening day in 2023, two games, the Detroit Tigers vs Tampa Bay Rays and the Guardians vs Mariners, were both played in 2 hours and 14 minutes.

The first game of the day, the New York Yankees vs San Francisco Giants, ended in just 2 hours and 33 minutes. The shortest opening day game played in 2022 was between the Guardians and the Royals, which lasted 2 hours and 49 minutes.

Shorter MLB games are anticipated once again this year.

The shortest opening day game in history was played in 1917

While MLB games are becoming shorter, they’re nothing compared to the abbreviated game in 1917.

The year of the First World War, the Cincinnati Reds defeated the Pittsburgh Pirates 5-1 in a game that ran for 1 hour and 25 minutes. This is the shortest recorded MLB opening day game in history.


Anthony Volpe rounds the bases

Anthony Volpe’s jersey flew off Yankee team shop shelves on opening day in 2023. (Rich Storry/Getty Images)

Anthony Volpe’s jersey (almost) completely sold out on opening day in 2023

Shortstop Anthony Volpe made his Yankee debut on opening day in 2023. During the home game against the San Francisco Giants, Volpe’s jersey flew off shelves. By the end of the game, there was only one Volpe jersey left in the entire stadium, according to NJ.com.

Team shop employees restocked the number 11 jersey eight times, according to the site. 

Volpe walked during his first at-bat with the team and quickly stole second. In 2023, the shortstop launched 21 home runs and stole 24 bases. However, the rookie disappointed fans with Derek Jeter-like expectations and settled at a .209 batting average for the season.

Conjecture from Yankee fans for Volpe to achieve Jeter status in 2023 were “unfair, unrealistic, untethered,” according to FOX Sport MLB analyst, Jake Mintz.

The Yankees shut out the Giants in 2023 on opening day.

Bob Feller threw the first no-hitter on opening day in 1940

On April 16, 1940, Bob Feller, nicknamed “the Heater from Van Meter,” threw the very first opening day no-hitter against the White Sox, according to the Baseball Hall of Fame.

Feller was 17 years old when he joined Cleveland’s franchise in 1936.

Tom Seaver

Tom Seaver holds the record for most opening day starts among pitchers.


1,010,999 fans attended opening day in 2023

In 2023, 1,010,999 attendees flocked to opening day in stadiums across the country, according to MLB.

Tom Seaver holds the record for opening day starts

Tom Seaver, who pitched for the Boston Red Sox, Chicago White Sox, New York Mets and Cincinnati Reds, holds the record for most opening day starts among any pitchers at 16, according to the Baseball Hall of Fame.

Seaver, nicknamed “Tom Terrific,” is regarded as a pitching legend and was named All-Star 12 times throughout his career. He also became a World Series champion in 1969.

Opening day attendance record sits at 74,420

Once again, the Guardians are a hit among baseball fans.

On April 7, 1973, the Cleveland Guardians defeated the Detroit Tigers 2-1 on opening day. The Cleveland Municipal Stadium packed in 74,420 attendees.

The stadium was used for Cleveland baseball and football until 1993, when ball play was moved to Jacobs Field, presently called Progressive Field.


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