Big League Stew - MLB

Get manager Ozzie Guillen talking long enough — certainly not a difficult task — and he has a tendency to start arguing with himself.

It's one of Guillen's more amusing traits.

Take his chat with reporters Thursday afternoon at Progressive Field in Cleveland, where the Chicago White Sox and Cleveland Indians found their workout hampered by the 3-4 inches of snow that had fallen on the city.

Some of the players made the most of it by taking batting practice indoors and making snow angels and having snowball fights outside. But Cleveland's head groundskeeper said the field will be good to go for Friday afternoon's opener.

The whole exercise left Guillen wondering why Major League Baseball would schedule two cold-weather teams as opponents in the season's first week.

From the Chicago Tribune:

"Very stupid to play in Cleveland right now," Guillen said. "Nothing against Cleveland. We expect that. When you play in Cleveland on opening day ... a couple of years ago they canceled like 30 games here. (But) we are here, and we have to play through snow."

But lest you think Ozzie was whining, he soon pivoted:

"A lot of players, they have to be prepared mentally to play in cold weather. That's no excuse. You want to play in nice weather? Sign with the NBA, you play indoors and you are fine.

"You play baseball, you will play in rain, snow, (heat) and (humidity). Don't make that as an excuse. I don't expect my players making any excuses or complaining about it. That's a no-no for us. We know it's cold. We all know that. That's two teams out there battling."

Only Ozzie gets to complain and that's it. No one else!

Others have had the same thoughts about opening day/opening week scheduling, and what Guillen loosely proposes is feasible.

Of the 15 opening series, only six are scheduled for mild climates or domes. Three more are happening in towns such St. Louis, Cincinnati and Washington, all of which usually have better weather than Chicago, Cleveland, New York, Denver and Philadelphia.

If MLB wanted to, it could schedule these early season series in 14 more hospitable climates. The National League is totally covered.

Here's a mockup:

Philadelphia at Atlanta
NY Mets at Florida
Cincinnati at Houston
St. Louis at Milwaukee
Cubs at Arizona
Colorado at LA Dodgers
Washington at San Francisco
Pittsburgh at San Diego

The AL is one short because the Twins no longer play at the Metrodome:

Minnesota at Texas
Cleveland at Seattle
White Sox at Oakland
Detroit at Angels
NY Yankees at Toronto
Boston at Tampa Bay
Kansas City at Baltimore

Eh, Baltimore's not usually too bad. Of course there would be a lot more variables. Would Ozzie like his team to start the season on a two-week road trip to California? Maybe he would — just to get it out of the way.

And teams won't be able to dodge the rain or freezing temperatures forever. So, as Ozzie also said, they could just go out there and play and not complain! Or go play in the NBA!

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