However, it was announced just under 30 minutes prior to first pitch that the start of the game would be delayed due to approaching weather.
As annoying as rain delays can be for fans, journalists and players alike, it’s understood that it’s just a part of baseball. All you can do is roll out the tarp, let the skies open up and wait for the rain to clear out so the players can take the field and the game can resume.
Except, what if an extended period of time passes without a single drop of rain falling from the sky?
Despite delaying the game due to the anticipation of rain, the Nationals didn’t roll out their tarp. In fact, by 7:30, weather conditions were still adequate enough for the game to be played.
Gotta say that it's ridiculous the #Nationals did not start this game at 7 p.m. as scheduled. Radar doesn't show rain arriving till 9-ish.— David O'Brien (@DOBrienAJC) July 6, 2017
Time continued to pass, and as 8:00 p.m. ET began to roll around, you guessed it — the assembly of clouds hovering over Nationals Park had yet to produce even a lone droplet of rain.
MLB.com’s Mark Bowman offered some in-depth analysis on how the stats broke down for the first hour and a half of the rain delay.
Statcast data for tonight's delay— Mark Bowman (@mlbbowman) July 7, 2017
Rain's exit velo: 0 mph
Covered tarp's launch angle: 0 degrees
Current rain probability: 45 percent
As you can clearly deduct, something doesn’t quite add up. Even Ender Inciarte issued his own two-cents on the matter.
This No-Rain delay is something i've never seen before!!— Ender Inciarte (@enderinciartem) July 7, 2017
As 9:00 p.m. ET began to roll around — nearly two hours after the originally scheduled start time for the game — this is what it looked like inside Nationals Park.
Nope. Can't play in this in DC apparently either. pic.twitter.com/unpy8y4K0j— Chip Caray (@kapaya1234) July 7, 2017
Perhaps Washington was worried about losing starting pitcher Gio Gonzalez due to a weather delay and having to rely on its atrocious bullpen? Or maybe it was just a horrible misjudgment of impending weather?
Regardless, I believe we can all agree this is absolutely ridiculous. Hopefully, for the sake of everyone involved, we will see a baseball game played in its entirety before the end of the night.