Play ball! Phillies fans ready to get back to the ballpark

The Phillies play their first game on April 8 at home against the Oakland A's.
PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- The lockout is over, and Phillies fans are now ready to get back to the ballpark.

Major League Baseball and the Players Association reached a deal on a new collective bargaining agreement.

"I'm feeling very excited about that," said Allison Shepherd of West Philadelphia.

"I thought it was going to be a long stand-off because they couldn't agree on anything," added Kenneth Brown of Germantown.

SEE ALSO: Baseball is back? MLB lockout nears end, players reach tentative agreement on new labor deal

"It's time to play ball," said Ronnie DeAngelis of Southwest Philadelphia. "I see everything that they're adding. I think everything looks good about what they're going to do. It's going to be 162 games so everything's going to be good."

The new agreement includes increased minimum salaries starting at $700,000.

"It's also good that the rookies get a little more money to start. Those guys need it, gives them some incentive to really step up to the plate, no pun intended," laughed John Mello of Prospect Park.

The season will begin on Thursday, April 7, and they will play a full 162 games.

Spring Training begins on Sunday with the first Spring Training games on March 17 or 18.

The National League will adopt the designated hitter rule, and the postseason expands to 12 teams.

"I have mixed feelings. Excited, yes because I love baseball, but the fact that billionaires were fighting over money with millionaires leaves a little bit of a bad taste," commented Greg Colelli of Norristown.

The series that was previously removed from the calendar will be rescheduled.

The Phillies play their first game on April 8 at home against the Oakland A's.
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