Thursday, August 28, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

Bolaris: Mother Nature throws Phillies out at home?

Opening Day of baseball season to most of us includes a sun-splashed field, the smell of spring and turf in the air. Taking your son to the ball game with dreams of him becoming a future Chase Utley, and watching him put on that well-oiled glove in wait for a foul ball or, even better yet, a ball tossed his way by one of his favorite ballplayers to be treasured forever.

Unfortunately if the Phillies home opener at Citizens Bank Park is played Monday as scheduled, the glove will be hidden by a rain poncho.

The guessing game has already started whether the Phillies will be able to squeeze in the big game before heavier rain moves in.

The Phillies organization and Major League Baseball should get together and do the fans and the ballplayers alike a favor and simply push back the festivities till Tuesday, which looks to be, by far, a superior day weather-wise, with a mix of sun and clouds, and temperatures in the low 60s.

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  • Such a schedule change will save everyone a big headache and eleiminate any need to play Russian roulette with the weather gods.

    Let's say the Philles try to play the game, gambling that the steady heavy rain holds off until 5 or 6 p.m. They start the game at 3:05 in light rain, which does not make the fans and or the players too happy, and then a meteorological gaffe: the rain becomes heavy an hour or two earlier than forecast. The tarp comes out and the fans sit, get soaked and everyone plays the waiting game. The umps won't call the game if it's already in the fifth inning, instead waiting for a possible let-up in the rain. The latest computer guidance would suggest a very long wait.

    Worst case scenario: the umps decide to call the game and the Philles are trailing after five innings because conditions have become unplayable. Opening Day becomes a miserable, wet loss.

    Who are you going to blame? "YOUR WEATHERMAN"? Trust me I have been there and it's not a good feeling.

    So as your Philly.com weatherman I'm saying here and now that the Phillies and MLB should make life easier for the fan base and play ball on Tuesday with no threat of rain.

    I have no clue if they are able to do that this far in advance, but they should when we have a defined major weather system that carries a better than 70 percent chance of rain moving in near game time.

    Too bad Opening Day isn't this weekend as both days will feature sunshine. On Saturday: clearing skies, windy under a mix of sun and clouds with temperatures in the upper 50s.

    Sunday will be delightful with abundant sunshine and temperatures in the low 60s.

    Opening Day forecast

    Monday: 3:05 pm

    Rain moving in, and becoming heavy at times by late afternoon or evening.

    Temperature: 54 degrees.

    Play on Tuesday!!

    John Bolaris

    John Bolaris For Philly.com
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