UPDATE: Tonight’s game has been rained out, officially called off at 7:38 p.m. It will be made up at 6:10 p.m. Thursday, part of a split-entry doubleheader. The originally scheduled first game begins at 12:10 p.m.
Paul Molitor summed up the situation succinctly. “There’s a lot of rain out there,” the Twins’ manager said.
Forecasts for Wednesday night appear dire for baseball, but the Twins are willing to wait. “We’re holding out a little bit of hope,” Molitor said. “There was enough unpredictability that you don’t want to cancel too soon if there’s a chance you might play. So we’re just waiting on any updates. If there’s going to be enough dry periods, or [merely] light rains so you could play, we don’t know.”
A rainout would necessitate a doubleheader on Thursday, when the forecasts call for dry weather. Thursday’s current schedule calls for a 12:10 p.m. start, but Molitor said such a quick turnaround won’t have a big effect on the decision tonight. He’d rather play tonight, even starting later than the 7:10 scheduled start, than play two tomorrow.
Ervin Santana is scheduled to pitch for the Twins tonight, and Molitor laughed when it was suggested that the Twins don’t want to risk starting the game and then having it rained out after just a couple of innings. “You think?” he laughed at the notion. “I don’t know how much that gets into the mix. You don’t ever want to start a game, no matter who’s pitching, if you don’t think you’re going to get five innings in.”
A rainout would scramble the Twins’ already jumbled pitching plans, because they won’t be allowed to add a 26th player for the makeup game, as is the case when a doubleheader is played with 48 hours notice. Molitor confirmed that Adalberto Mejia, who was removed from Tuesday’s start for Class AAA Rochester after throwing just 33 pitches, “is in the mix” to start Saturday against the Royals. But playing two games Thursday means the Twins would need another fill-in starter on Monday.
Newcomer Adam Wilk, a starter in the Mets organization in April and early May, is one possibility; presumably Kyle Gibson and Nick Tepesch, currently at Rochester, would be, too.
The rain has stopped for the moment at Target Field, though the tarp remains on the field. Check back for updates.
Should the Twins play tonight, they’ll have another different look to their lineup, with Max Kepler, who sat out Tuesday’s game, hitting cleanup against Colorado righthander German Marquez. Here are the lineups for a game that’s very much in doubt at the moment: