The Houston Astros were slated to host the Texas Rangers for a three-game series starting Tuesday. Hurricane Harvey, though, has rendered that plan impossible. So the Astros — according to team president Reid Ryan — asked the Rangers to swap home dates. They’d visit the Rangers in Arlington for this week’s three-game set, and host the series originally scheduled to be played in Arlington on Sept. 26.
But the Rangers refused.
“They rejected that and didn’t want to do that,” Ryan said to reporters in Houston (via ESPN). “The Rangers wanted us to play the next three days at their place, but they did not want to trade series with us. They wanted all six of our games at their park.”
That will not happen. This week’s games will be played at a neutral site — Tampa Bay. The Astros will bat last and will ostensibly the home team. Save, of course, for the fact that they will not have their fans behind them.
According to ESPN, Rangers general manager Jon Daniels cited inconveniences to his fans who held tickets for the late season series, and the fact that the Rangers would end the season with four straight series on the road as reasons why the club refused to swap home dates.
The argument that the Rangers declined to trade for competitive reasons seems like a reach, at best. The Rangers hold longshot aspirations of making the playoffs in the American League, as they are three games behind Minnesota for the second Wild Card spot with 22 games remaining. But there are five teams between them and that final spot.
As to the idea that they didn’t want to inconvenience fans, asking their city to pony up $500 million to replace a perfectly fine stadium which opened in 1994 seems like a bit of an inconvenience as far as we’re concerned.
Twitter reacted harshly towards the Rangers. Here’s a sampling:
Oh. Sorry to even think of putting out the Rangers. How brazen of the Astros. pic.twitter.com/oX9tvqdfVX
— John P. Lopez (@LopezOnSports) August 29, 2017
Thousands are facing financial ruin they will never escape. But Astros/Rangers playing in TB? That’s the real tragedy. Stop. Please. Now.
— Alyson Footer (@alysonfooter) August 29, 2017
— Matt Thomas (@SportsMT) August 28, 2017
— Lance McCullers Jr. (@LMcCullers43) August 28, 2017
— Mike Glenn (@mrglenn) August 29, 2017
[image via Katherine Welles/Shutterstock.com]
Follow Joe DePaolo (@joe_depaolo) on Twitter
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