|Wednesday's game in Baltimore. The three figures seated|
behind home plate are scouts
So they played a game without the fans Wednesday in Baltimore. That was hardly ideal, but there were clearly greater concerns in that city last week than baseball.
One of my colleagues questioned why they played the game at all. My response: For the same reason they'll wait three hours for an April storm to pass and then play a sloppy, soggy contest in front of 3,000 shivering fans. It's on the schedule, and most if not all inter-division opponents only come to town the once. That was the case this week in Baltimore with the Chicago White Sox. They found a day when the Sox can return to "Charm City" for a doubleheader to make up the games lost on Monday and Tuesday, but nobody wants to make a second one-day trip to play one game if it can be avoided.
So they played a day game Wednesday to beat the curfew, played it in front of TV cameras, assembled media, three scouts and a revolving cast of Baltimoreans trying to get a glimpse through the locked entrance gates.
This hasn't happened before. There have been games postponed for riots, certainly -- 1967 in Detroit for example -- but not a contest in which the fans were barred for safety reasons. Let us hope it doesn't happen again,