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Wednesday, Dec 17, 2014
Sports

Rain delays Tigers' party

The Associated Press
Published:   |   Updated: March 18, 2013 at 05:56 PM

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DETROIT -

One win from the World Series. Rainy or not, the Detroit Tigers will have to wait.

Game 4 of the AL championship series between the Tigers and New York Yankees was postponed because of a stormy forecast Wednesday night — although Comerica Park was still dry when the decision was made.

"They kept saying it was going to come and it never came," Tigers pitcher Max Scherzer said. "So go figure."

With the Tigers leading the best-of-seven series 3-0 and seeking a sweep, Game 4 was rescheduled for today at 4:07 p.m. New York will send ace CC Sabathia to the mound against Scherzer. The Tigers will have lefty Phil Coke, who saved Games 2 and 3, available after a day of rest.

Under the original schedule, there was a good chance Sabathia would pitch a potential Game 7 on three days' rest if the Yankees rallied in the series. Now, he might be limited to one start in the series.

"You cannot think about Game 7 when you need to win a game," New York second baseman Robinson Cano said.

Yankees center fielder Curtis Granderson, who was benched along with third baseman Alex Rodriguez by manager Joe Girardi on Wednesday before the game was called, said the unplanned night off might actually help him and his slumping team.

"It's definitely not going to hurt by any means," Granderson said. "We haven't played well to this point. Who knows? Change is always a good thing."

The first pitch Wednesday night was slated for 8:07 p.m. But shortly before the scheduled start, the crowd was informed of a delay. A radar forecast for the Detroit area was eventually posted on the scoreboard video screen, as if to explain to fans why there was no baseball despite what was still pleasant weather at the ballpark.

The postponement was announced after a delay of about 70 minutes. A misty rain finally began about 15 minutes after the postponement was announced and heavy, steady rain followed shortly thereafter.

The Tigers are no strangers to rain in the playoffs. Last year, ace Justin Verlander had two starts cut short by bad weather — although both were on the road.

"A lot of people were pretty upset that Verlander didn't get to finish his start," Detroit catcher Alex Avila said. "So, I think people would be pretty upset if they didn't get to see Scherzer and Sabathia finish their starts as well. Major League Baseball is trying to protect not only the pitchers, but also play a clean game without having to stop and stuff like that."

After Game 1 of the 2011 ALCS at Texas was delayed twice for a total of 1 hour, 50 minutes, Game 2 was called off well before the scheduled first pitch because of a forecast calling for more wet weather.

Then it didn't rain that night.

There was no immediate indication as to whether Rodriguez or Granderson would remain on the bench today.

Rodriguez has been only 3-for-23 in this postseason.

"We will go forward. Alex will go forward," Yankees general manager Brian Cashman said.

"That doesn't mean that he's done, that he's finished, that he is not capable. He is still a big threat, but for whatever reason right now we are adjusting to what we are seeing," he said.

The 37-year-old slugger with 647 career home runs didn't like his seat in the dugout.

"I'm not happy about it. Obviously, you come to the ballpark feeling you can help the team win. When you see your name is not in the lineup, it's obviously disappointing," Rodriguez said before Game 4 on Wednesday night. "You've got to accept being a cheerleader and also make sure that you're ready when you're number's called."

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