Phillies release 2018 schedule, which could include game in Williamsport

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Philadelphia Phillies’ Rhys Hoskins (17) celebrates his three-run home run with Odubel Herrera, left, during the seventh inning of a baseball game against the Washington Nationals, Friday, Sept. 8, 2017, in Washington. The Nationals won 11-10.

Major League Baseball will begin its next season earlier than ever, on March 29, 2018, with the Phillies in Atlanta to start. And it could include one fewer Phillies game at Citizens Bank Park than usual.

The Phillies are expected to play their Aug. 19 game against the New York Mets in Williamsport as a part of MLB’s Little League Classic, which debuted in 2017 with Pittsburgh against St. Louis. The details of the game have not yet been finalized; the league has not announced its plans. But Bowman Field is home to the rookie-ball Williamsport Crosscutters, a Phillies affiliate, so it is a logical arrangement.

The season will begin earlier and on a Thursday because, as part of the new collective-bargaining agreement, there are more off days built into the schedule. The home opener in South Philadelphia is scheduled for April 5, a Thursday, against Miami.

The New York Yankees will visit Citizens Bank Park for the first time since the 2009 World Series, during a midweek series June 25-27. The other home interleague opponents are Toronto (May 25-27), Baltimore (July 3-4) and Boston (Aug. 14-15).

The Phillies’ longest road trip of the season is May 28 – June 7, a trip that takes them to Los Angeles, San Francisco and Chicago.

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