We have yet another first in the Cubs/White Sox regular-season interleague series: a postponement of a game on the South Side. (There was one at Wrigley Field in 2009.)
It's too bad, because the Cubs had taken a 2-0 lead on a Scott Hairston double, followed by a Welington Castillo home run into the left-field bullpen. Both of those events are rare feats in the 2013 season, and neither will go into the record books.
Neither will Edwin Jackson's start, which had an excellent beginning. Jackson retired the first six batters he faced, and then Conor Gillaspie, for the second straight night, had the first White Sox hit. After EJax struck out Tyler Greene, it started raining lightly, then harder, and the umpires stopped play.
You can get an idea of how hard it was raining by the photo at the top of this post. That's a lake beginning to form behind second base; that was after about 30 minutes of rain that fell in sheets, with lightning and thunder and both severe-thunderstorm and tornado warnings issued for areas just south and west of the ballpark. About 30 minutes later, the outfield looked like this:
Even if it had stopped raining right then -- just before 9 p.m. -- it would have taken well over an hour for all that water to drain, even with the excellent drainage system they have at the Cell; that photo doesn't really even give you an idea of how much water was everywhere on the field and in the stands. It was still raining, though somewhat less so, when they called the game at 9:10 p.m., having waited about an hour and 20 minutes. There's little chance they could have resumed before 11, and there was still lightning in the area. They made the right call, particularly since the two teams have to reconvene at 1:20 Wednesday afternoon at Wrigley.
With schedules as tight as they are, there aren't many chances to make up this game. Monday, June 24 is the only common off day the two clubs have the rest of the season. The Cubs will be finishing up a home series vs. the Astros on June 23 before heading to Milwaukee; the White Sox arrive home from Kansas City before hosting the Mets June 25. So that's a possible makeup date -- that is, if this series isn't bothered by more rain that's in the forecast for both Wednesday and Thursday.
It's really too bad for Jackson, who has now had both of his last two starts interrupted before getting to the fourth inning. He looked better tonight, sharp, didn't throw many pitches before the rain hit. Hopefully, that's a good sign for Jackson going forward.
There was so much rain in the area around the ballpark that Shields Avenue was almost completely covered with water heading northbound, with water splashing up on the sidewalk as I was walking toward my car. Whenever they play this game, there will likely be the smallest announced crowd in the history of the Cubs/White Sox interleague regular-season series; there were much larger blocks of empty seats Tuesday night, particularly in the upper deck. It appeared to be fewer than 30,000, maybe quite a bit fewer.