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Cleveland Indians drop two games against the weather

Winter appears to be the toughest opponent the Indians will face this season.

Matt Marton-USA TODAY Sports

The 2016 Cleveland Indians are a game and a half back in the AL Central, but not because of any shortcomings on the field. In the first week of the baseball season the Tribe have already postponed three games.

As Zack Meisel pointed out on twitter, the Indians are currently on pace to finish at 45-45.

While this might sound unprecedented, the Indians have struggled to play games as scheduled in the past. In 2007, the team postponed an entire series against the Mariners, spreading the games throughout the year. They even moved the next series against the Angels to Milwaukee, where they played as the "home" team.

I'm not going to lose my mind and suggest that the Indians build a new stadium with a dome. Jacobs Progressive Field is wonderful, and no number of 72 degree baseball games would replace it. Besides, there's something sterile and unnatural about playing baseball indoors. I'm also not going to furiously shake my fist at the sky and scream, begging for better baseball weather. I've tried. At best, the gods are not listening; at worst, they're smirking and telling the interns to keep the storm fronts coming along.

Whether you chalk it up to bad luck or dubious geography, the Indians haven't been treated very well by the weather in recent years. Last season there were 33 rainouts/postponements in baseball by my count. Four of them involved the Indians, and one game against the White Sox was outright cancelled since it didn't effect the playoff race. By comparison, the Dodgers have been postponed at home only seventeen times since 1962, and have hosted more than 1,200 games since their last rainout.


Josh Tomlin should have taken the mound today, and the only reason he'd been scheduled was to make sure he didn't go two weeks without a start. Now, despite beating Trevor Bauer for the fifth spot in the rotation, he might have fewer innings pitched until May. Corey Kluber is set to pitch on Tuesday, his last start coming on April 5th (the delayed opening day game). In today's game it's almost a law that a staring pitcher will step on the mound every five days. Will the extra rest negatively effect his ability to perform? Part of me wants to believe that more rest can only be a good thing, but pitchers are creatures of habit.

This is the part where I would include an insightful quote from a member of the team if I could ask them questions and reasonably expect an answer. I offer this picture of a duck instead. It's fluffy, cute, and also frustrated at the lack of baseball.

Have the rainouts made for a difficult start to the season for fans? Of course. I feel awful for the folks who flew in on the fourth for Opening Day only to be turned away at the gates. Is it frustrating to cover the team when games are postponed? Yes. There are a few thousand now-useless words sitting in a Google doc that I just want to set on fire because everything is pointless now.

Are the players frustrated? You bet. For all of the complaining I can do from the couch, I can't even imagine how it feels to spend a month in Goodyear, Arizona, preparing for the season, working to get a little bit better every day, and then dealing with this:

The good news is that next weekend's forecast — the Indians host the Mets for a 3-game interleague series — looks quite a bit better:

It's not perfect bleacher weather, but if the sun is out and the players are on the field, I'll take it. Until then, the Indians are at the Rays, cooped up in Tropicana field. Outside of catastrophic events, the games will occur as scheduled.

However, this is a Cleveland sports team that we're talking about; the improbable always seems to find a way. Why not speculate?