Friday, October 13, 2006

DETROIT - Weather, not a conflict over which league's playoff game deserved prime-time coverage, was the reason Game 3 of the American League Championship Series between the Oakland Athletics and Detroit Tigers started at 4:30 p.m. yesterday, baseball commissioner Bud Selig said.

Game 2 of the National League Championship Series between the St. Louis Cardinals and the host New York Mets, pushed back into what originally was a day off by Wednesday's rainout of Game 1, got the 8:05 p.m. time slot.

"I talked to all four teams yesterday in the morning, because I'd been up worrying about things," Selig said. "I said, 'I want you guys to tell me what you think you should do. You're there. I'm not in Detroit; I'm in Milwaukee, where it's colder than hellok-ds,' " Selig said before Game 3 started at a frigid Comerica Park.

"By noon, I had talked to all four clubs again - and a lot of meteorologists. Detroit said they'd rather play earlier because of this [forecast of cold and possible late-evening rain]. And the Mets said because of rain [expected] earlier in the day, we'd rather play at night. So it was easy."

As it was, the game-time temperature was 42 degrees, made to feel all the colder by winds gusting at 24 m.p.h. throughout the day Clouds and a threat of rain also hovered over the heavily bundled Tigers crowd one day after Detroit was hit by hail, sleet, snow flurries, high winds, and, incongruously, a spate of sun showers.

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