CLEVELAND, Ohio (WKBN) – Little League players from East Palestine helped welcome the Cleveland Guardians as they took the field during Opening Day at Progressive Field.

The boys and girls formed a ‘Player Tunnel’ as the team entered the playing field Friday. 

The Guardians are playing in front of their home fans for the first time in 2023, and they do so, having won five of their first seven games on the road.

“I don’t know why you’d ever lose the hunger to win,” said Guardians manager Terry Francona. “I never quite understood that.

“You want to represent Cleveland really well, and a lot of people are going to show up and it’s gonna be a really good series,” said Guardians outfielder Steven Kwan. “I think everybody has that in their head, that they want to really impress everybody and show Cleveland, thank them for all the support and go out and play a good game.”

“Seeing what they did last year, seeing what they’re doing now, seeing these guys putting time in the weight room, in the batting cage, watching film. These kids, whether they’re young or older continue to grow,” said Guardians catcher Mike Zunino. “I think that’s what the great teams do.”