Tuesday, June 11, 2013
Delay nothing new for Sox this season
By Doug Padilla
CHICAGO -- When you’re struggling, even Mother Nature doesn’t want to see you play.
Something seems to be conspiring against a disappointing Chicago White Sox club that has experienced some unique delays and postponements this season.
The White Sox’s game against the Toronto Blue Jays on Monday was delayed over an hour by fog. Already this season the White Sox had games postponed by rain and another by anticipated cold temperatures. They also had a 15-minute delay at the outset of a game at Washington because the umpires were stuck in traffic.
Bee swarms, power failures and fans on the field have all paused games for teams in the past so the White Sox still have other options for more delays. In fact, a game was delayed in Pittsburgh earlier this season so that the grounds crew could re-do a batter’s box that was out of alignment.
The White Sox already have a traditional doubleheader scheduled against the Cleveland Indians, and a day-night doubleheader planned against the Minnesota Twins later this year. Their home game against the Cubs was also rescheduled for July 8 because of rain.
This one resumed after a 1-hour, 10-minute delay, but the poor conditions returned in the late innings as the game was played to its conclusion.
"It was tough from the outfield," White Sox right fielder Alex Rios said. "From the batter's box you could see the ball but from the outfield there was times where you have to really be on the ball because if you were not you had no idea where the ball was at."
At least White Sox starter Dylan Axelrod appreciated a little poor visibility on a night when the Blue Jays took him deep three times, two from Jose Bautista.
"I didn't see all those home runs go out so that was cool," Axelrod said.
For White Sox manager Robin Ventura, a Central California native, the conditions reminded him of his youth.
"That’s normal for California as far as fog," Ventura said. "Here I haven’t seen it. I played a lot of high school games like that. I got a lot of hits that way. It was an aluminum bat but I got a lot of hits that way."
Blue Jays knuckleballer R.A. Dickey struggled, giving up seven runs on 10 hits in five innings, but he didn't blame the conditions for affecting his fluttering specialty pitch. Adam Dunn touched him for two home runs.
"“It’s weird; I’ve been playing a long time and that’s the first game I’ve ever played in those conditions, so it was challenging," Dickey said. "I didn’t have anything to go back and say, ‘OK, I’ve done this and this in these conditions.’ That’s the first time I’ve ever played in those conditions.
"It was tough, but I still had opportunities to make some big pitches with two outs and unfortunately a knuckleball is tough. Sometimes, when it doesn’t break, it’ll just sit there on a tee for guys like Adam Dunn to hit out of the park – and that’s exactly what he did.”