Bats' games postponed - in an iceout
By Darren Desaulniers
Special to The Courier-Journal
OTTAWA -- There wasn't a cloud in the sky here yesterday, but a scheduled doubleheader between the Louisville Bats and the Ottawa Lynx was pushed back to 1:05 p.m. today because the tarp was frozen to the field at Lynx Stadium.
A steady, sometimes heavy rain fell Friday -- causing the postponement of that day's game -- and then freezing temperatures overnight turned the baseball field into a skating rink. Nobody thought about strapping on skates and playing hockey instead, though.
"A lot of these Americans can't skate, so I'd hate to see that," Bats manager Rick Sweet said with a chuckle. "It might be a lot more dangerous than playing ball in those conditions."
This was not the first time the Lynx had to postpone games despite beautiful weather.
In 2003 a game was postponed because of a blackout that affected the United States and Canada. In 2000 the Lynx were grounded during a heavy rainstorm in Philadelphia while the Buffalo Bisons awaited them in Ottawa under sunny skies and temperatures in the mid-80's. Sweet was Ottawa's manager at the time.
It was very sunny here yesterday but just 37 degrees.
"In my years in the game, this is the first time I've had this happen," Sweet said. "I'm surprised it hasn't happened before.
"You don't want to play ball when you've had the circumstances we had. They've got ice all over the field and no way to get it off. We made the right call (to postpone the game). You worry about the things you have control of, and right now we don't have control of the weather."
Sweet is not concerned about his team's lack of playing time this season. The Bats' only game was Thursday's 4-1 opening-day loss to the Lynx.
"It would be tougher, but spring training was so good this year weather-wise, we got so much work in that a couple of days off isn't going to hurt anything," he said.
"We got to hit the cage, so the batters got their swings. The pitchers were out there and got to throw, so the players don't mind."
The forecast for today is sunny and 50. Louisville's Mike Gosling will start the first game, with Elizardo Ramirez starting the second. They will oppose Cory Morris and Brian Burres, respectively.
The Bats will start a four-game series in Syracuse tomorrow, then head to Louisville for Friday's home opener against the Lynx. The scheduled four-game series will be a five-game set to compensate for the one lost game in Ottawa.
Note: The Cincinnati Reds optioned outfielder Chris Denorfia to the Bats yesterday. He went 2 for 3 in three appearances with the Reds.
Saturday night suspended
04/08/06 - Southern League (SL) Jacksonville Suns
Jacksonville, Fla. - After four innings of two-thirds of Saturday night baseball at the Baseball Grounds of Jacksonville, Mother Nature took over.
With a delay of over an hour, Saturday night's affair between the Jacksonville Suns and Chattanooga Lookouts was suspended to be picked up at the same point Sunday at 3:05. The game will begin at the same point left off, at the score of 3-3 and a 1-2 count on the Suns' Craig Brazell with two out in the fifth inning. At the conclusion of the normal nine inning game there will be a thirty minute break. The regularly scheduled Sunday game will then be played and is now scheduled for seven innings.
Tickets from Saturday are good for Sunday's games, but will need to be exchanged at the Suns box office for a comparable seat.
Sunday will feature a Sunny the Bunny Wobblehead giveaway to the first 1,500 kids in attendance, sponsored by Dixie Egg, Eggland's Best and Lite 96.1 FM.