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Tuesday, June 12, 2018

Engel: From the cheap seats

A man after my heart, Mac Engel:

Other than bullying, intimidation or lying, I have no idea how the Rangers actually sell a single ticket to one of these afternoon games.

No explanation is acceptable why a game is scheduled for 2:05 p.m. first pitch in June in Texas at Global Meltdown Ballpark. Per the Farmer’s Almanac, the average temperature for June 10 in Arlington is, “You Don’t Want To Know.”

By the seventh inning, most of my face had melted into the plastic seat. Death was near, and she was welcome. I was speaking in tongues. I desperately wanted to cry, but my body was out of water.

Engel blames Sunday day baseball on travel considerations, but at least as significant must be ESPN’s desire to have their feature game on Sunday evenings be the only option for viewers.  Sunday night baseball in Texas was an institution for a whole generation without affecting travel too much, and has disappeared only in the past decade.

BDC Posted: June 12, 2018 at 08:56 AM | 26 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: air conditioning, espn, heat exhaustion, rangers, schedule

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   1. RMc Has Bizarre Ideas to Fix Baseball Posted: June 12, 2018 at 04:49 PM (#5690681)
the average temperature for June 10 in Arlington is, “You Don’t Want To Know.”

Weather Underground sez 88 degrees. (Sunday was 97, tho.)
   2. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: June 12, 2018 at 05:49 PM (#5690730)
Average high temperature on July 20 or July 21 for various MLB cities, in ascending order:

69 San Francisco
73 Oakland
75 San Diego
78 Seattle
82 Boston
83 Los Angeles
83 Anaheim
83 Chicago
85 New York
86 Cincinnati
88 Washington
89 St. Louis
89 Atlanta
89 Miami
94 Houston
96 Arlington
   3. Pat Rapper's Delight (as quoted on MLB Network) Posted: June 12, 2018 at 06:14 PM (#5690747)
Vote YES to #keepbdccool
   4. The Yankee Clapper Posted: June 12, 2018 at 06:14 PM (#5690748)
Didn't BDC go to a game in 98° heat just yesterday? Producing almost a dozen OmniChater updates without collapsing? What's the problem?
   5. McCoy Posted: June 12, 2018 at 08:36 PM (#5690831)
I recall going to a summer day game in DC that was pretty brutal a few years back but I think the worst was a summer game at the Vet over a decade ago. For whatever reason the stands were packed (probably at the height of Sammy Sosa's greatness and that was a time when the Cubs drew well on the road) which meant everyone was fitted in like sardines in their seats at the Vet. It was hot, extremely muggy, you were rubbing shoulders with your fellow hot sweaty fans and for whatever reason the guys behind us brought in some hoagies with raw onions on them which smelled something awful in the hot sun.

The Vet with its concrete and astroturf used to get over 100+ degrees on the field. I think I remember one game where the broadcast was showing something like 110 on the field. The ushers would routinely go to fans who either wisely or accidentally purchased tickets in the shade and would ask them to switch seats with people who thought they were buying premium seats because they were in the first few rows but did not realize they would be in the sun. I would routinely be answering "no, sorry" during the summer when I would go to games.
   6. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: June 12, 2018 at 08:43 PM (#5690849)
everyone was fitted in like sardines in their seats at the Vet. It was hot, extremely muggy, you were rubbing shoulders with your fellow hot sweaty fans and for whatever reason the guys behind us brought in some hoagies with raw onions on them which smelled something awful in the hot sun.
Did the guys later regurgitate the hoagies onto you?
   7. McCoy Posted: June 12, 2018 at 08:45 PM (#5690850)
Alas, no that was not me at that game.
   8. Colonel Samuel B. Sternwheeler Posted: June 12, 2018 at 10:00 PM (#5690915)
But it's dry heat in Dallas!
   9. cardsfanboy Posted: June 12, 2018 at 10:13 PM (#5690925)
I have only once ever left a game early(by early I mean before 9innings, I also once left in the 12th inning) and walking back to the car I collapsed from heat related conditions. I cannot imagine how the players felt about that game.
   10. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: June 12, 2018 at 10:18 PM (#5690929)
I have only once ever left a game early(by early I mean before 9innings, I also once left in the 12th inning) and walking back to the car I collapsed from heat related conditions. I cannot imagine how the players felt about that game.

I remember reading that midsummer day games in the pre-Astroturf Sportsman's Park could reach 120 degrees at field level.** Add the old school heavy wool uniforms to the mix and those guys really earned their pay.

** Up until fairly recently, the record high temperatures for nearly every state were established in the pre-Astroturf (and often pre-air conditioning) years.
   11. cardsfanboy Posted: June 12, 2018 at 10:25 PM (#5690931)

I remember reading that midsummer day games in the pre-Astroturf Sportsman's Park could reach 120 degrees at field level. Add the old school heavy wool uniforms to the mix and those guys really earned their pay.


I'm not that old, but everything I read about astroturf Busch, was that it was the hottest field in mlb, including Texas, at least after you include humidity. I just couldn't imagine playing a game in those conditions, and couldn't imagine doing back to back games like that before you could recover your liquid... and even though Chicago is colder, many have claimed the sheer number of day games was just draining because of the relative heat without a cooldown.

My event happened within a year of the newest stadium opening, I was probably pre-dehydrated due to drinking, so I didn't do myself any favor.... but still it shocked my gf when I said "we need to leave." and it was just the 7th inning. (and as we were leaving I got to hear the shrieks of the fans as the Cardinals tied it up and won it)
   12. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: June 12, 2018 at 10:28 PM (#5690933)
I'm not that old, but everything I read about astroturf Busch, was that it was the hottest field in mlb,
I thought you were older than I am? I remember Astroturf Busch Stadium when I was a kid, and yeah, it was legendarily hot. I remember TV shots of a thermometer on the field getting up over 110 in the '80s.
   13. BDC Posted: June 12, 2018 at 10:31 PM (#5690935)
Heh, I just noticed that I'd bought a ticket to a day game on Wednesday 8 August. That one is going back on StubHub.

The Rangers' printed schedule is in such small font that I assumed the "1:05" was "7:05" because I assumed they weren't insane; but it's still my fault because the time was legible enough online. Oh well, I only paid ten bucks and I might get $5.40 back.
   14. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: June 12, 2018 at 10:34 PM (#5690937)
I think I remember Pedro Guerrero having to leave a game at Busch one time because of the heat.
   15. cardsfanboy Posted: June 12, 2018 at 10:38 PM (#5690940)
I thought you were older than I am? I remember Astroturf Busch Stadium when I was a kid, and yeah, it was legendarily hot. I remember TV shots of a thermometer on the field getting up over 110 in the '80s.


Sorry, that sentence didn't come out right, I'm not old enough to remember pre-astroturf sportsman park, I remember busch stadium astroturf, but I was a kid so it didn't matter to me.
   16. Perry Posted: June 12, 2018 at 11:53 PM (#5690965)
I remember Astroturf Busch Stadium when I was a kid, and yeah, it was legendarily hot. I remember TV shots of a thermometer on the field getting up over 110 in the '80s.


Busch II was the ballpark about which Casey Stengel said "It sure holds the heat well," and that was before they Astroturfed it.
   17. Walt Davis Posted: June 13, 2018 at 12:44 AM (#5690981)
Among the reasons I pretty much always sat upper-deck grandstands at Wrigley. That and I couldn't afford any non-bleacher seats in the sun anyway.

a day game on Wednesday 8 August.

C'mon BDC, those guys have a torturously long flight to NYC, you can't expect them to lose sleep over this. Plus it will be a great chance to see the Seattle and Tex benches in action!

Almost seriously, MLB should allow one-day roster expansion for crazy day games in crazy hot places.
   18. stevegamer Posted: June 13, 2018 at 03:47 AM (#5691004)
I'm 50, and not old enough to remember when Sunday games were traditionally at night. I think that's because such a time has never existed. Minor leagues play lots of weekend day games, and travel considerations there are generally much less - I doubt any team is now traveling 3 time zones for a game in the minors.

I think it's odd to blame Sunday day baseball on something other than "stadium lighting invented after baseball".
   19. RMc Has Bizarre Ideas to Fix Baseball Posted: June 13, 2018 at 06:54 AM (#5691012)
The Vet with its concrete and astroturf used to get over 100+ degrees on the field.

I remember attending a USFL game when it was something like 140 degrees on the astroturf. Bill James once said something to the effect of, "Playing baseball on turf is bad enough, but football? Yikes!"
   20. BDC Posted: June 13, 2018 at 07:19 AM (#5691015)
I'm 50, and not old enough to remember when Sunday games were traditionally at night. I think that's because such a time has never existed

The Texas teams both used to play at night on Sundays, from their inception; Jolly Old's chart of temperatures in #2 shows why. Oddly enough, this persisted in Houston after they built the Astrodome, which was pointless; but it was very functional in Arlington.

You're right that Sunday day games were the rule everywhere else.
   21. Moses Taylor, aka Hambone Fakenameington Posted: June 13, 2018 at 08:04 AM (#5691020)
I'm not that old, but everything I read about astroturf Busch, was that it was the hottest field in mlb, including Texas, at least after you include humidity. I just couldn't imagine playing a game in those conditions, and couldn't imagine doing back to back games like that before you could recover your liquid... and even though Chicago is colder, many have claimed the sheer number of day games was just draining because of the relative heat without a cooldown.

The hottest game I ever went to was at Busch II, last season there, in July. Just having the circle design trapped heat in there, I couldn't even imagine how much hotter it was with the astroturf. That game wasn't notable for anything, but we had bought tickets to both the Sat/Sun games, but the Sun game got moved to Sunday night and we couldn't stay so I sold them to another primate here. It was his birthday, and he got to witness the Neifi grand slam in person. Unfortunately for him, he's a Cards fan.
   22. BDC Posted: June 13, 2018 at 08:33 AM (#5691027)
Addendum to #20: we're really talking June/July/August; earlier and later, Texas day games were more common. And because somebody will certainly check, this being BBTF :) the Colt .45s appear to have played Sunday day games their whole first season in 1962, and moved to midsummer Sunday nights in '63.
   23. Lance Posted: June 13, 2018 at 09:40 AM (#5691066)
I remember praying for warmth like that. I went to a game in Kansas City in April 2007 where the temperature was 29 degrees. The Royals set up empty drums with open fires in them along the concourse to keep the tiny crowd from freezing. It wasn't the only way Kansas City reminded me of the Great Depression, but it was the most vivid.
   24. PreservedFish Posted: June 13, 2018 at 09:42 AM (#5691068)
I do seem to remember that Ozzie Smith and the gang would often have sweaty, glistening faces.
   25. ajnrules Posted: June 13, 2018 at 01:32 PM (#5691302)
The Texas heat was probably why Adrian Beltre's 3,000th hit game, played during the afternoon on July 30, drew such a small crowd (32,347 as opposed to 44,658 the night before).

And I'm amazed nobody told the story of how Ernie Banks tried to play a double-header in the oppressive heat of the old Colt Stadium in Houston, and passed out before the end of the first game.
   26. BDC Posted: June 13, 2018 at 03:14 PM (#5691435)
Some more trivia: after seven such games (total) in their first three Texas seasons, the Rangers played only 10 June/July/August day games in the two decades 1975-94. At least four of those were openers of twi-night doubleheaders, possibly makeup games; some others might also have been odd makeup times.

From 1995-2003 they'd play 1-3 JJA day games per year, and several of those were the first weekend in June or the last of August.

The spike came in 2004, when they played nine day games in JJA, and then eleven in 2005, still the most. They got a grip then for a few years, playing an average of four from 2006 through 2012. Since 2013 they've averaged eight June/July/August day games per season.

Eight games doesn't sound like a lot, but it's a tenth of the home schedule, and as noted, from the mid-70s through mid-90s the annual average was between one and nil.

It's one way to bake voters' brains into approving a new stadium, I'm living proof.

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