(Cleveland)- Excitement and optimism describes how fans are feeling at the Indians home opener as the tribe takes on the Yankees. 

Jim from Cleveland tells WTAM 1100 this is his 41st straight Indians home opener and today is as exciting as the first one. He describes the opener as good as the playoffs as fans are all fired up. Larry from Parma says the opener is like a holiday to him, he always takes the day off from work.

 See more pictures from the home opener! (Photo by Colleen O'Neill/WTAM 1100)

Thousands of fans showed up early packing downtown bars and outside Progressive Field to take in pre-game activities. It was a rally alley event so fans got to enjoy discounted food; people walking on stilts, dance entertainment and kids got their faces painted with the Indians logo.

The theme for the opener is "traditions" so five teams with fathers got to throw out balls to their sons in a simultaneous first pitch. The duos were Steve and Nick Swisher, Mickey and Michael Brantley, Steve and Zach McAllister, Sandy Alomar Sr. and Sandy Alomar Jr and Tito and Terry Francona.

Indians drummer John Adams was recognized for 40 years of providing the beat for the games. Carlos Baerga was also saluted for hitting two home runs in one inning from opposite sides of the plate while with the tribe back in the 90's.

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