Brandon Webb’s ongoing recovery from 2009 shoulder surgery hit another potential roadblock today, as the former Cy Young winner threw 70 pitches of batting practice and said afterward that “it went bad”:
I was pretty wild. I felt fine, but I was just all over the place. It wasn’t like my last pen. After my last pen, I was like this is pretty good. I thought after that I would be ready for a sim game.
Not feeling any pain qualifies as good news, but everything else was bad. Anthony Andro of the Fort Worth Star Telegram reports that Webb hit three batters and won’t be making a scheduled simulated game start later this week. He’s not quite all the way back to square one, but obviously Webb making any sort of contribution to the Rangers this month is all but ruled out and even May seems optimistic.
The World Series is often played in near winter-like conditions. The 2008 Series was interrupted by a snowy, wintry mix. The 2012 World Series games in Detroit dipped into the 20s. It’s not uncommon to see players wearing balaclavas and other winter gear during the so-called “Fall Classic.”
Not this year, though. Indeed, this year we’re likely to see record high temperatures for Games 1 and 2 at Dodger Stadium.
As of this moment, WeatherUnderground.com forecasts a high in Los Angeles of 101 degrees for today’s World Series Media Day and highs of 102 and 98 for Games 1 and 2, respectively. First pitch for both games is just after 5PM Pacific time, when the sun will still be blazing. The sun will set about an hour or so in to the game which should cool things off somewhat, but the heat will definitely impact pregame workouts and the early innings. Fans showing up three or more hours before first pitch will do well to prepare themselves for the elements.
The hottest World Series game on record came in Phoenix for Game 1 in 2001 when the mercury stood at 94 degrees at game time. That year Major League Baseball unwisely demanded that the Chase Field roof be left open for the Diamondbacks-Yankees tilt. If there is a Game 6 and/or 7 things will be nicer as the long range forecast shows temperatures in the low 70s by then.
Hydrate well, Dodgers and Astros. Those of us watching from cooler temperatures and/or the comfort of our air conditioned homes will feel really bad for you.