Baseball hopes to beat rain, get in Game 2 of World Series
CLEVELAND (AP) Major League Baseball is hoping it can play Game 2 of the World Series on Wednesday night despite the rain.
MLB senior vice president Peter Woodfork said officials were prepared to have the Chicago Cubs and Cleveland Indians play through light rain.
''If it's light and ... we don't think it's going to get any heavier, I think we'd be apt to play in that,'' he said about 2 1/2 hours before the scheduled 7:08 p.m. start. ''The field's in good condition. The tarp's been on. The outfield can take a lot of water.''
Woodfork said Commissioner Rob Manfred will examine the situation at about 6:15 p.m., in time to notify teams whether to have their starting pitchers start to warm up.
MLB on Tuesday moved up Wednesday's start by an hour to 7:08 p.m., and light rain started to fall at about noon.
Accuweather said that if rain tracks to the north, there will be a spot shower or two during the game, but that if rain remains over the area, it could be steady and cause delays.
''Right now we have a light rain, light drizzle, spitting out probably until about 10,'' Woodfork explained. ''That being said, it's probably come a little heavier than we expected already. So, we're confident, but things can change, and we'll have to read and adjust.''
While regular-season games can be shortened because of bad weather as long as the losing team has completed at least five innings, a rules change approved in 2009 mandates that all postseason games and regular-season tiebreakers must be played to conclusion at the ballpark where they began.
The change came a few months after Game 5 of the 2008 World Series, which became the first World Series game to be suspended with the score tied at 2 in the sixth after a steady rain turned the field into a soggy mess. The game resumed two days later, with the Phillies edging Tampa Bay 4-3 to clinch the title.
Cubs manager Joe Maddon, who managed the Rays in 2008, remembers the game being ''very awkward to play.''
''The rain was horizontal,'' Maddon said a few hours before Game 2. ''It was freezing. There was actually standing water on the field. They wouldn't even call an infield fly rule because the wind was blowing so much. It was really an abnormally difficult night to play baseball.''
Thursday is a scheduled off day before the Series is set to resume at Chicago's Wrigley Field, which last hosted the Series in 1945.
''We want to do all we can to avoid breaking the game up. That being said, you can't control the weather,'' Woodfork said. ''I think they understand here in Cleveland that the weather can be a little dicey, so if something happens and they need to come back tomorrow, again, that's unfortunate, we don't want that to happen, but realistically we can't control the weather.''