By:  Kurt Snyder & Holly Horning

Hey, if bad weather is going to dominate the Tigers’ schedule this week, Totally Tigers might as well focus on it. The first week of the season always seems to beg the same question in regards to inclement weather.

Kurt and Holly have not shared their answers to today’s question. It’s the best way for our readers to get the best bang for their buck. So here we go.

Do you think MLB makes a concerted effort to consider potentially poor weather when they plan the first week of scheduling every year? Why are West Coast teams playing West Coast teams? Why are dome teams playing dome teams?


I don’t think Major League Baseball considers weather at all in their scheduling. They only hope for the best, especially in the Midwest. They don’t schedule around the potential that Opening Days will be ruined, and money will be lost.

With 7 teams playing in dome stadiums and so many others in the South and West, cities in the Midwest and the East should never play each other at least within the first 2 series of the season.

Without doing a complete study, I think you could get really close to a solution. Maybe not 100%, but at least an attempt can be made. Detroit visiting Chicago in the first series of the season is ludicrous and a recipe for disaster as it is playing out this week. Detroit heading home after that and opening with Boston is equally puzzling. This is not the time of year for teams in “cold weather” cities to find themselves on the same playing field.

Opening Day is a big deal in so many baseball towns. Almost a holiday in Detroit. It is the first rite of spring for Tiger fans to break free of winter and usher in a new baseball season. What we just saw in Chicago was a shame. People filled the park for an Opening Day game threatened by bad weather. After a long delay, they never played the game.

So Opening Day in Chicago took place on Tuesday, not in front of a packed house, but in front of 5,000 people. To me, that’s a failure by Major League Baseball in a big market baseball town.

There must be a method to the madness behind how scheduling is determined; but it’s obvious that poor weather is not part of the equation. When you look at who is playing who and where during the first week, weather cannot even be close to the top of the list of priorities.

So much planning goes into Opening Days around the country and it can all be ruined by having to play at a time when the weather often threatens to dictate attendance, fan spending and God forbid, enjoyment of a much anticipated occasion.

Teams and fans are just supposed to suck it up I guess. But many fans, given the weather, end up spending their money in the bar across the street watching on TV or flat-out just going home with a whole pocket full of money.


There’s nothing like a stop-start-stop start to your team’s season and the challenge of keeping momentum up after the first game and win of the year. Conceivably, the Tigers may be rained / snowed out for 2 of their first 3 games and forced to make them up in a just-announced double-header. Not to mention a TBD game later in the season when the timing may be slammed and the team not-so-fresh.

It’s an unfair disadvantage to teams which reside in the coldest of climes.

It’s also clearly not enough to schedule an off-day after every Opening Day – a lesson that continues to be ignored year after year.

But a quick look at the first series for each MLB team reveals that they are paired with either division rivals or nearby cities. And I have to ask why this logic – or really, lack thereof?

It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to understand that some parts of this country are the very last to shake winter weather patterns. I mean, really – Detroit and Chicago at the beginning of April? Whoever decided on this schedule must be from Florida.

I can only think that the Opening Day schedule is developed as it is in order to promote rivalries and thus attendance. But tell that to the Chicago fans who had to bear the weather and even worse, the world’s worst intro music. Just to see the introductions.

Days off from work that were wasted; kids were disappointed. Money spent and nothing to show for the day. Everyone using all their hard-earned days-off and financial capital on Monday’s game and few being able to return on Tuesday, as evidenced by the paltry 5,000 fans for the make-up game.

And it’s not just the beginning of the year that should be questioned. Let’s look at August when fans literally fry at the games if they live on the East Coast or in the South. Is it really too much to ask that there be more emphasis on scheduling games to fit the climates depending upon the month?

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23 thoughts on “ONE TOPIC – TWO TAKES

  1. Saying Cold weather teams are at a disadvantage is a bit confusing since the Indians found a way to make the World Series and they have had multiple April postponements. With an average April temp in Detroit of 60 I’m not sure we could ever account for excessive heat , excessive rain.


    • couldnt disagree more with the dissenting comment. lets use our heads in scheduling. its ludicrous to think that these midwest teams are going to have baseball weather this time of the year. do a west coast, southern swing of the season like the pga does. remember a couple years ago the snowouts that occurred? its called common sense, mlb.


  2. Still beats opening on a meaningless interleaugue game… starting in Florida or Georgia would be fine weather but pointless. Maybe like Cleveland this year, next season we can open on a roady in Texas or even perhaps KC, so it means something and weather has a chance at being fair.


  3. Yes to everything you two wrote today. It won’t happen because it makes too much common sense. April in LA or under a dome. Tigers always spend thier first west coast trip in may- best weather of the year -here.


  4. The real reason is not the scheduling it’s the fact that the season starts too early and ends too late. Starting no earlier than the middle of April would fix all these ‘scheduling’ problems.

    Liked by 1 person

    • 100% agree! And playoffs in late October and early November stinks when they are held in the north where the temps are in the 30’s and 40’s. That isn’t baseball weather. But who cares about the fans or the players?


  5. All weather problems are solved as we all know by a retractable roof.Yes many expert(Holly & Kurt) baseball die hard fans will say no to this.If the roof is left open 90% of the season for the grass to grow, if thats possible then why not.Would like to know what the players opinion is.


  6. Bottom line: Mother Nature does what She wants to do, when She wants to and where She wants to do it. Juggling the schedule won’t make a difference whatsoever. Been like this for more than 100 years. Why change now?


    • Chuck, I’d say chances are Miami, Tampa, Arizona, L.A. (X2), Oakland, Arlington, Atlanta, Seattle, and Houston have better weather in early April than Detroit, Chicago, Cleveland, Milwaukee, N.Y. etc.


      • True. However, this goes back to Mother Nature and the wide fluctuations in weather that April offers. There have times where there were warm Opening series’ and then a late April freeze or snow occurs. Phoenix and Detroit had similar temps back in late Feb-early March.


      • Even the East Coast teams like Boston, Baltimore, and Washington D.C. have nice weather this time of year, generally.


  7. I wonder the same thing. I get that the imbalance of home games might mess with the standings considering the home field advantage, but it would all work out in the long run if they scheduled with some common sense. That would mess with the standings lots less than games that simply don’t happen for 6 weeks and then destroy the rotation when they DO happen later.


  8. I’d like to see the season start a week later and the timing problem of a shorter season cured with the addition of twi-night doubleheaders during the week and regular doubleheaders on the weekend. With that said, I agree with everything Kurt and Holly said.


  9. With prevailing winds off the lake here in Chicago all spring long, you can’t really count on baseball weather until June. Teams want as few home games in the spring and September as possible, since attendance is best when school is out. So it would be a tough sell to make the domed and southern teams host all the early games.


  10. Perhaps Major League Baseball should consider shortening the season by a month or two. It won’t happen because of the money, but it would make for less cancellations, and less discomfort for the fans and the players.


  11. Warm weather teams argue that too many home games early means more away games during the Summer when attendance is at it’s peak. TV networks exert influence to insure they get return on $’s spent on rights. Nobody wants to start the season with an extended road trip & risk coming home with more L’s than W’s. Revenue & standings will always take priority over weather.


  12. Whoever said MLB was thoughtful? Time & again MLB has missed the obvious. Remember the “perfect game” pitched at Comerica that was ruined by an obvious missed call by the 1st base ump? Of course, you do. Hundreds if not thousands of fans called MLB headquarters, who could have reversed the call, but no! Tradition is an excuse for gross stupidity.


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