Just received the official word: Game 5 has been postponed again.
The tentative plan is to play the final three-and-a-half innings Wednesday night starting at 8:37 p.m. Acccording to Weather.com, there is a 30 percent chance of rain with rain and snow showers likely occuring in the morning. The high temperature is supposed to be 48 degrees. So it looks good that the Phillies and Rays will play a cold, abbreviated Game 5 tomorrow night.
Here is another interesting sub-plot:
Now, there is a possibility that Cole Hamels could be available to pitch Game 7. All it would take is Major League Baseball keeping an open travel day instead of playing Games 5, 6 and 7 consecutively. If that happens, Hamels would get four days rest before Game 7, putting him in line to start the game if it happens.
This would be the scenario:
Monday - Hamels pitches six innings in the first half of Game 5
Tuesday - Off (Rainout)
Wendesday - Off (End of Game 5)
Thursday - Off (Travel to Tampa Bay)
Friday - Off (Game 6)
Saturday - Game 7 on normal rest.
But it remains to be seen what Major League Baseball is going to do about travel between Philly and Tampa. Everyone knows how much this depends on TV, and Friday and Saturday nights aren't great television nights, so I imagine Fox would rather play Game 6 on Thursday and Game 7 on Friday if necessary. But that would also force both teams to pull a potentially late night. Let's say Game 5 goes extra innings and lasts another two hours. The game would end at 10:37 p.m. By the time all was said and done, they probably wouldn't leave on their flights until 1 a.m. at the earliest. That would put them in Tampa at 3 a.m. and in St. Petersburg and checked into their hotel no earlier than 4 a.m. They would then play an important baseball game 16 hours later.