Cold Weather Gets a Chilly Re­sponse

The Washington Post Sunday - - Sports - By Barry Svr­luga

Over the past sev­eral days, ma­jor league games in Detroit, Chicago and Cleve­land have been post­poned be­cause of snow or ex­treme cold. But late yes­ter­day af­ter­noon, play­ers hud­dled in the home club­house at RFK Sta­dium, pulling on stock­ing caps and long un­der­wear.

“We didn’t con­sider not play­ing,” Wash­ing­ton Na­tion­als Pres­i­dent Stan Kas­ten said. “I don’t think there’s a real long his­tory of call­ing games be­cause of cold.”

Game-time tem­per­a­ture for the 7-1 loss to the Ari­zona Di­a­mond­backs was 41 de­grees, and Kas­ten said it was “too com­pli­cated” to move the game to the af­ter­noon. Gen­eral Man­ager Jim Bow­den would not com­ment on whether he felt it was too cold for base­ball.

“It’s ridicu­lous,” sec­ond base­man Ron­nie Bel­liard said. “Any­body can get hurt. Your hands are freez­ing, your feet are freez­ing. You can break any­thing out there. Def­i­nitely, we should not play.”

The one Na­tional who might feel dif­fer­ently: right-han­der Shawn Hill, who will start the se­ries finale this af­ter­noon. Hill grew up in the Toronto sub­urb of Mis­sis­sauga, On­tario. “This is noth­ing,” he said.

Dis­puted Homer

Austin Kearns ac­counted for the Na­tion­als’ run last night with his first homer, but it al­most didn’t count. Ari­zona Man­ager Bob Melvin ar­gued that the ball — which third base um­pire Jerry Meals ruled hit the foul pole in left — ac­tu­ally hit left of the pole. Re­plays ap­peared to show that Melvin was right, but af­ter a hud­dle, the ini­tial call stood.

“I had faith he made the right call,” Kearns said. . . .

Of­fi­cial scorer David Vin­cent made a scor­ing change in Tues­day’s 9-3 loss to Florida, charg­ing short­stop Josh Wil­son with an er­ror on a ball hit by Dan Ug­gla in the first in­ning. The change means Hill was charged with one earned run in the in­ning in­stead of three — cut­ting his ERA from 7.20 to 3.60.

The change was made Wed­nes­day, but club of­fi­cials didn’t alert the me­dia un­til yes­ter­day. . . . Red­skins quar­ter­back Ja­son Camp­bell threw out the first pitch.

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