Major League Baseball missed out on a marquee Justin Verlander/C.C. Sabathia pitching match-up in game one of the ALDS because of a botched weather forecast, then suffered through two rain delays in the fifth inning of Saturday night’s ALCS game one in Texas. Commissioner Bud Selig and team representatives went into discussions about Sunday night’s ominous forecast and, not taking into consideration that it has rained exactly one time in Texas since 1985 and that was Saturday, postponed the game about five hours before the first pitch.
Texas Rangers president Nolan Ryan, a guy who I’m sure has kept cattle from herding off a cliffside during a thunderstorm at least once in his life, explains the call:
“With the forecast that we had … we didn’t want to experience what we did last night; and with the forecast for this evening, it appears that it’s going to be duplication of what we saw last night,” Rangers president Nolan Ryan said. “I think the one thing we’re concerned about is the integrity of the game and not [putting] either team in a situation where possibly the elements could affect the outcome of the game.”
By the time the game had been scheduled to start, the weatherman was calling for a “mostly cloudy” night with a 10% chance of rain. No rain had fallen for three hours, and there was no rain in the area an hour later. The grounds crew left a sad, dry tarp on the diamond as the reality sank in — Major League Baseball had just postponed a playoff game because it might have rained. At no point did Justin Verlander speak up and explain that God was just trying to tell him to knock it off.
I’m sure there was a lot going on behind the scenes. I’m sure the MLB didn’t want to inconvenience FOX Primetime by making them play old episodes of This Week In Baseball or re-runs of The Fresh Prince like TBS does when it rains too much, and sure, when you’re playing a string of important games you don’t want your guys trudging through mud and soggy grass. At the same time, one of the enduring images of sports is warriors battling the elements, powering through snow and torrential rain to prove their might, and what does it say about modern day baseball when dark clouds make two entire teams and a league go “welp, pack it in, too dangerous”?
Anyway, take a look at a few shots from the non-event, and compare/contrast them to Hurricane Katrina pictures at your leisure.
[photo credits to AP and Reuters]
If Mark Buehrle tried to Slip-n-Slide on that thing he’d shatter his ribcage.
Derek Holland braves the harsh conditions.
This is about as wet as the field got. This guy is why we didn’t get a game 2, isn’t he?
The Pulitzer Prize-winning sadness of a tailgater forced to gate tails alone. He came all the way from Ft. Worth!
WATCH OUT YOU’RE GONNA DROWN
(how funny is it that the AP photographers are so bored by this game that they’re going around trying to frame these artsy shots like they’re in year two photography at Sweet Briar?)
Nature’s equivalent to fat girl default photo angles.
Pretty soon these are just going to be black and white shots of Nolan Ryan’s hands.
Toddler Cade Lewis, seen here doing what Max Scherzer apparently can’t.
A vendor packs up his wares. Thanks a lot, Obama.
The devastation. Hopefully this will be a warning to Major League Baseball, and they’ll just cancel the dangerous non-Yankees non-Red Sox non-Phillies World Series now, before somebody gets hurt.