With a game scheduled tonight and two more tomorrow before heading to Miami for a game on Friday, there’s absolutely no guarantee that the Dodgers get in any or all of these games. It’s too late to shift the series to another city — this has happened before — and there’s obviously no more wiggle room to push any games.
So what then?
According to the Los Angeles Times:
If the Dodgers and Twins fail to complete their three-game interleague series, the teams have three mutual off days to play make-up contests: May 19, July 28 and Aug. 25, although the league and the players association would likely have to sign off on those dates.
Let’s look at those dates. May 19 has the Dodgers sitting in the middle of a home stand. Good luck with that. (Minnesota would be en route from home to San Diego.) July 28 has the Dodgers returning home from San Francisco, which isn’t bad, and the Twins would be headed from Minnesota to Kansas City. August 25 is exactly the same for the Twins, while the Dodgers would be going from Los Angeles to Arizona. None are ideal. (Also not ideal, but maybe possible, thanks to our friend the Drank: July 17, the day before the second half starts, with the Twins at home and the Dodgers headed to St. Louis.)
We’ve seen this happen before, of course. Last year, the Mets got wiped out of an early game in Minnesota and had to return for a game in August, on their way from San Diego to New York. In 2011, the Dodgers had a May game in Pittsburgh rained out and went back on September 1, on their way from Los Angeles to Atlanta. A week later, a game in Washington was rained out and never made up, leaving both teams with 161-game seasons.
If at least two of these three games get in, this isn’t a huge problem. The Dodgers can stop by Minnesota on a day off, or (unlikely, but possible) the game might not be made up if it isn’t needed. But the potential of multiple games getting washed out does present a huge issue. Would the Dodgers have to return on two different days off? Would they do so only once, but need to play a doubleheader? Could, potentially, a May 19 game be played in Dodger Stadium with the Twins as the home team since they’d be starting a series in San Diego the next day?
This is one of those consequences of interleague play, because if this was happening in a city the Dodgers were going to return to later in the year, it’s not a big deal. They only make it to Minnesota once every few years, so now it’s a problem; just imagine the impact this could have later in the year if an off day is lost and they’re playing something like 31 days in a row. If only for that — and not for the ugly, ugly baseball we’re likely to see in terrible conditions in Minnesota tonight and tomorrow — let’s hope the weather cooperates enough for us to see something resembling baseball.