Have Game? Will Travel!

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

5 Innings of Horizontal Rain: Padres at Cubs

In one of the rainiest games I have attended, the Padres beat the Cubs 4-3. There are a lot of arguments out there that say baseball is not the same as football because baseball players will not play in “the weather.” Well, I am here to tell you that is not the case. They may not play in absolute downpours (except for tonight), snow, sleet, or sub 30-degree temperatures but they will play in rain.

Currently, I believe they play in the rain because the money is too good. First, a cancelled game for the Cubs means they lose 40,000 tickets worth of revenue. Of course, teams only seem to schedule day-night doubleheaders now (the Pirates did just play an “old-fashioned” doubleheader yesterday) in order to make up a portion of that lost revenue. Second, the television stations do not care if it is raining – they just care that they can sell ads against the game they are showing.

Tonight’s game was absurd. Our season tickets are under the overhang in the upper deck. We enjoy it because it keeps us dry when it is raining, cool when the sun is out and even colder when it is less than 40 degrees. However, tonight it was raining “horizontally.” The wind was blowing 17 mph to left field. Since we sit on the first base side, my back was completely wet since the rain was falling horizontal through the screen above our section.

I have been to other games where it has rained less hard and been delayed. In fact, 5 years ago, the Ultimate Sports Wife and I attended a game that rained equally as hard but was delayed just in time for postponement (before the 5th inning). Please tell me why today we had to press on so early in the season, passed the 5th, while the Padres are still in Chicago for two more days? It made no sense. In the 9th inning, the rain calmed to a sprinkle and lasted for the next hour or so. The game could have been completed in normal weather, rather than the Cubs and Padres combining for 0 runs after the Padres took the lead in the top of the 4th. I’m not how the ultimate decision is made on whether or not to delay, suspend or postpone games but tonight’s game did not follow the normal standards.

The main beneficiary of tonight’s game was Shawn Estes. He won his 100th game pitching. Normally, I try to comment on all milestones that I witness. Sure this is not too consequential but for Estes…it was a banner night.



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