NEW YORK -- One of the Astros' team buses was about 10 minutes from arriving at Yankee Stadium on Monday morning, when the players got word there would be no baseball. Steady rain and cold temperatures caused the postponement of the 2016 season opener by one day, giving some of
NEW YORK -- One of the Astros' team buses was about 10 minutes from arriving at Yankee Stadium on Monday morning, when the players got word there would be no baseball. Steady rain and cold temperatures caused the postponement of the 2016 season opener by one day, giving some of the Astros a day off in the Big Apple.
The Astros and Yankees are scheduled to open the season at 12:05 p.m. CT on Tuesday, with 2016 American League Cy Young Award winner Dallas Keuchel on the mound against Masahiro Tanaka. Keuchel shut out the Yanks for six innings in last year's AL Wild Card Game.
"You can't really beat Mother Nature," Astros manager A.J. Hinch said. "So it's unfortunate that we can't play, but at least they called it early and we have a chance to get a mini workout in, and we'll get back to the hotel and try again tomorrow."
Some of the players who were on the early bus got in a short workout at Yankee Stadium, while those who were going to be on the later bus to the ballpark stayed at the hotel.
The weather forecast all week had called for cold temperatures and rain, and the Astros cancelled their on-field workout Sunday because of the wind and cold. Tuesday's forecast is for partly cloudy skies with a high temperature of 43 degrees.
"We had been aware that the forecast did not look good, so I think most of us were kind of prepared this was a possibility," veteran catcher Jason Castro said. "I guess that's why they do the off-day right after the first day. I'd rather they have it [postponed] and go tomorrow than sit around all day. That's probably the silver lining."
Tuesday's game will mark the first Opening Day in the big leagues for several players, including Carlos Correa, Tyler White, Matt Duffy and Lance McCullers, who's on the disabled list but traveled with the team to New York so he can experience the fanfare.
Correa said Opening Day is what you dream of as a kid.
"It's finally here, and it's my first Opening Day," said Correa, who was called up in June last year. "I'm going to enjoy everything that goes on out here."
Duffy, who is from Massachusetts, will have several family members and friends in the stands on Tuesday for his first Opening Day. White's parents made the trip from North Carolina to see their son in a big league uniform for the first time.
"It's going to be a special day tomorrow, and watching the games yesterday, there's an itch to get out on the field and participate in these games," Hinch said. "Having it be at Yankee Stadium is special. There's a lot of history here. We played a game here last fall that was pretty special in our organization's history, so there's a lot of anxious moments getting to Opening Day and that feeling that you're starting out 0-0. Now we have to wait 24 hours to get that feeling back."
Brian McTaggart is a reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog, Tag's Lines. Follow @brianmctaggart on Twitter and listen to his podcast.