Oakland Athletics match against Seattle Mariners was called off just 30 minutes before the start due to a waterlogged infield last night (4th April).
What was dubbed 'the most stunning postponement of a game in Oakland A’s history' by the San Jose Mercury News, both teams and the officials deemed the pitch too dangerous to play on after heavy rain.
The match was officially announced as postponed at 7:05pm whilst fans had begun filling the seats at the O.co Coliseum.
The infield had been left uncovered on Thursday night in an attempt to dry it out after rain had called off two other matches earlier in the week. But an unexpected downpour overnight only made conditions worse and ground staff were left powerless.
Speaking to the paper, director of stadium operations David Rinetti said: “The field had taken a significant hit all week. We had information last night that there was going to be a break in the storm.
Rinetti explained when his team arrived at the stadium at 7am on Friday morning the infield was drenched. The ground staff worked tirelessly for 12 hours to dry out the pitch but officials ruled it unplayable.
The two sides talked about playing a double-header on either Saturday or Sunday to make up for the lost game. But these plans were canned after Rinetti questioned whether the pitch would be able to withstand even one match on Saturday.
Rinetti added: “We are doing everything possible to have the game played tomorrow.”
How the ground was allowed to be soaked by the California rain frustrated Oakland A’s reliever Sean Doolittle who called the situation “ridiculous” whilst outfielder Sam Fuld said it was his weirdest experience in baseball.
Umpire Fieldin Culbreth explained the A’s were misled by the weather forecast supplied to them. Oakland refused to release the name of the weather forecaster.
Culbreth said: “At the end [of the field] it was very soft and probably just not playable for the standards of not only the game itself but for the health of the people who were going to be on the field.”
The advantage each team have is as the season has only just begun there will be plenty of time for the game to be rescheduled. The Mariners visit Oakland twice before the end of the regular season between May 5th-7th and September 1st-3rd.
But with unpredictable weather in the Californian area expected, Oakland will pray more games are not lost to further postponements.
Unfortunately for Oakland, the Coliseum is forecast to be baked in warm spring sunshine from Monday but the A’s will be away in Minnesota.
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