Our little drama group has gathered in Boston. If things work out here, we’ll go to Paducah.
At Fenway Park, July 31, the Red Sox were leading Detroit 4-1 in the sixth inning. The Tigers had the bases loaded, and the umpires called a halt because of rain. An hour and 45 minutes later, they officially declared “Don’t Play Ball,” and Boston got the game-shortened win.
The debate began immediately with Detroit people saying the game should have never been played because of the steady rain, or it should have been finished in some way since their team is in a tight pennant race with Chicago in the American League Central division. Boston is breathing in the wild-card chase.
To me the whole issue is deliciously classic baseball lore. Why? Any kind of rule—except Game Postponed from the start—is totally ridiculous in bad-weather situations. But as long as McGraw, Mack, and Ruth got in five frames, it was (and is!) a complete game. My thoughts:
Some day, continue the contest from wherever it was when everyone was sent home. Sorry for the italics, but it’s getting wet out here, and I want to get done.
The two teams played the following night in Boston. You’re going to tell me they couldn’t have begun 90 minutes early and wrapped up the game in question? Oh, no, that would have disrupted a rule that’s been in effect maybe since the Cubs last won the World Series (1908).
The Tea Party couldn’t get this amended. We’ll have four outs instead of three before the “Fab Five” is impugned.
You’re telling me baseball can have a designated hitter—well at least in the AL—but it can’t resume rain-interrupted play? Ty Cobb would have hit .382 till he was 50 if he could have been a DH. The Yankees of the 1930s-‘40s-and-‘50s may still be batting.
You think the White Sox, Red Sox, and Cardinals wouldn’t have wanted wild cards in the ‘50s when New York teams won everything? What would Commissioner Kenesaw Mountain Landis have thought about wild cards??
How could such a change to a later-date resumption hurt anything?
MLB can’t do this, but it allows red, green, and blue jerseys! Can you picture Honus Wagner in anything but that faded, thick gray fabric, hand-sewn by the angels?
This is a sport that tells you how many RBIs a player has on Mondays on the road, in 60-64 degrees, under a quarter-size moon, on Bobblehead nights, on cable—but not network TV—against college-educated pitchers, but can’t count to nine?
You think Justin Verlander wouldn’t want to rare back from the mound—circa 1915—after putting a little spit on the ball? Of course, in the rain, he wouldn’t need it.