Friday's Cubs vs. Marlins game has been postponed due to Hurricane Frances, here's the full article at mlb.com
NEW YORK -- With Hurricane Frances churning toward the east coast of Florida, Friday's game between the Chicago Cubs and Florida Marlins at Pro Player Stadium has been postponed .
As of now, there is no rescheduled date. And there is no word on whether games slated for Saturday or Sunday will be played.
The Marlins trail the Cubs by three games in the Wild Card standings.
"We're watching the pattern of the storm closely, and for now, no decisions have been made about when the game will be rescheduled or whether the remainder of the series will even be played," said Katy Feeney, Major League Baseball's senior vice president of scheduling and club relations. "But for now, for the safety of the fans, the players and the umpires, the Friday game has been canceled."
Hurricane Frances, a widespread Category 4 storm, is on track to make landfall in South Florida either late Friday or early Saturday morning. The eye of the storm is projected to strike north of Jupiter around the Palm Beach County and Martin County lines. But the mass size of the storm is expected to bring heavy rains and winds across South Florida and the entire state.
Word of the postponement came as the Marlins were playing the Mets on Thursday afternoon at Shea Stadium. The team is traveling to South Florida immediately after the game, and a number of players are planning on either evacuating or leaving their homes for safer grounds.
"I think you have to make sure everyone in OK," said Marlins All-Star third baseman Mike Lowell. "When Sept. 11 came, nobody cared about the games, and rightly so. I don't think they are important compared to the safety of a lot of people. I still think we might play one or two of those games. But in the scope of things, [the games] are not important."
The Cubs, who hold a three-game lead over the Marlins in the Wild Card race, returned to Chicago after completing their series at Montreal on Wednesday.
Nothing has been decided of yet on Saturday or Sunday. Depending on the impact of the storm, there likely would be a doubleheader, weather permitting, on one of those days.
"The Florida Marlins organization has been closely monitoring the progression of Hurricane Frances in relation to our weekend of baseball against the Chicago Cubs," Marlins president David Samson said. "We are first and foremost concerned about the safety of all residents in the state of Florida and will return to baseball-related activities at Pro Player Stadium when the storm has passed and it is safe for our fans to attend."
The threat of the storm has caused a great concern among the Marlins. Many players live in evacuation areas in Palm Beach, Broward and Miami-Dade counties.
"I think it's a concern for the people in South Florida, that's the key," Marlins manager Jack McKeon said. "Baseball, you can play that anytime. The people out there expecting the worst, I think you have to be concerned about their welfare. Players are included, because they have families. It's a little distracting. But hopefully it won't be too bad and we'll be able to play two or maybe even three games."
Paul Lo Duca, Mike Redmond and Nate Bump are planning to stay a few days at Lowell's home just south of Miami, which isn't expected to receive a brunt of the storm's impact.
"I think the wives are doing a good job getting food and stuff for the kids," Lowell said. "I think West Palm Beach is going to get hit hard, from what I hear. It's scary. I live pretty far south of Miami, which is good for this storm."
Jeff Conine, who lives a bit inland in Westin, is planning on traveling to the western part of the state.
"Mentally, a lot of guys here have their minds elsewhere, with their families in South Florida," Conine said. "We're getting in at the last minute to either bunker down, or get out of Dodge. We're leaving. I'm not taking any chances. We have a place in Naples."
Juan Pierre and Dontrelle Willis live in Adventura, on the intercoastal waterway, near Pro Player Stadium.
Neither knew exactly where they would go as of Thursday afternoon.
"I'm heading west," Pierre said. "I'm not staying in my place. I'm going somewhere."