Toronto Blue Jays executive Andrew Miller was standing with some colleagues by the Rogers Centre infield Monday morning when he heard a series of unexpected bangs.
Several pieces of ice fell on the domed stadium from the nearby CN Tower, with one chunk creating a hole the size of a workdesk in the roof on the east side of the building.
“It’s hard to describe, it was really loud,” Miller said. “It sounded like fireworks or some sort of explosion going off.”
The evening game between the Blue Jays and Kansas City Royals was postponed about 90 minutes before the scheduled first pitch at 7:07 p.m. ET. The teams will play a double-header on Tuesday.
Miller, who was at field level to inspect damage from a weekend ice storm that hammered the southern Ontario region, said he was startled by a series of “different, loud collisions.”
“We saw it happen, it was pretty frightening at the time,” said Miller, the team’s executive vice-president of business operations. “We knew that (if) there was a game going on at the time, it would have been a risk to players and the fans.”
A hole was still visible in the roof on Monday afternoon. Work crews eventually repaired the tear although tarps remained on the turf in right field and by the left-field line and the edge of the infield.
The Blue Jays were coming off back-to-back postponements in Cleveland over the weekend due to rain.
If the double-header against the Royals is played as scheduled, the second game will begin 30 minutes after the conclusion of the first game, which is set to begin at 3:07 p.m. ET.
Blue Jays starter Jaime Garcia was tabbed to start Game 1 and fellow left-hander J.A. Happ was set to start the nightcap. Right-hander Aaron Sanchez will get the start Wednesday.
Fans with tickets to the Tuesday night game will be able to attend both games of the double-header, the team said.
Tickets from Monday’s game can be exchanged for one of nine future games (including entry on Tuesday).
It was the first time a game has been postponed at Rogers Centre since a Jays-Royals contest on April 12, 2001.