The Detroit Tigers were scheduled to play the Kansas City Royals at Comerica Park today. It’s not gonna happen, though, as it’s cold, snowy and there are high winds, making the ballpark unfit for man or beast. They’ll make up the game at another time.
This is the third postponement of a Tigers game so far this year. There have likewise been multiple postponements in New York and in Cincinnati. Just a lot of bad weather in a year when the schedule got going several days earlier than usual due to changes in the CBA requiring more off-days and MLB’s desire to finish the World Series in October as opposed to having it bleed into November.
All of these postponements will cause many to argue against either the early-starting schedule, games in northern/non-domed cities or both. I totally get that, but I don’t think there’s any perfect solution to any of this.
We’ve had snow-outs on later dates than today in years past. There are no guarantees in northern cities until at least late April. Here in Ohio we have some years in which it hits 60 degrees for days on end in March only to give way to 38 degrees and sideways rain on tax day.
That aside, not scheduling games in places like Detroit or New York is an impossibility. All teams want an Opening Day as early as possible because it’s a big gate and serves as the marketing and P.R. focal point of the season. At the same time, the southern, domed and west coast cities don’t want the non-Opening Day portion of their seasons to be unduly weighted for March and April when kids are still in school. Players don’t want to be on the road too long to start the season either. Everyone wants balance in their schedule for a host of reasons, and that means at least some games are going to be played in dangerous cities, weather-wise, in the early going. Most years we get lucky. Some years we don’t.
I think the only real change that we can and should make is to avoid interleague games in danger zone cities early. Series like that Pirates-Tigers matchup we had last week which led to a sparsely-attended doubleheader following a cancellation. It’s easy for the Royals and Tigers to reschedule today’s washout later. They play 19 times, for Pete’s sake. The Pirates had no plans to go to Detroit again after the first series, limiting the options.
Anyway: we’ll get all of the games in, folks. I promise. We always do.