Theo Epstein is counting on common sense from MLB for Thursday's game

Sean Sears
NBC Sports Chicago

The Cubs and Theo Epstein are hoping that common sense is used by the MLB for Thursday's potential makeup game with the Nationals as the entire East Coast prepares for Hurricane Florence. Epstein shared his thoughts on the matter during an interview with 670 the Score, and while no decision has come yet from the MLB, Epstein said he felt it would be "unreasonable" for the MLB to push forward with the currently scheduled makeup game. 

"The first step is to wait and see what the decision is and we're all counting on common sense to rule the day. If we get into that position, there will certainly be a conversation with our players to talk about what the right thing to do is. Again, Major League Baseball won't send our players to a situation that's dangerous and we certainly wouldn't either. So absolutely there would be a conversation with our players before we determine what to do. Right now, we're in a wait-and-see mode hoping for a common sense solution."

The Cubs have gone 30 days without an off-day due to postponed games and could really use the day off while they continue to fight off the Brewers for the NL Central divisional crown. And while the weather is expected to be worse more south of Washington D.C. the Cubs already had a four-game set with the Nationals last week that had delayed start times and two cancelled games, Hurricane level rain and wind likely doesn't translate to favorable gameday weather conditions. 

Epstein noted he knew that the MLB would never send them into dangerous weather conditions, but hopes they can see why asking the Cubs to make up this game Thursday night with even a chance of a rain delay puts them in a terrible position for the remainder of the season. 

"We're in discussions with Major League Baseball awaiting their decision on the forecast and trying to make our case that it's unreasonable to ask this group of players to go 30 straight days with a game scheduled and possibly fly back to Washington and sit in a rain delay once again given the night game tonight and day game on Friday."

Of course, if Epstein and the Cubs had their way they would be playing this game after the regular season was scheduled to end in hopes that this single game may not even matter to their playoff race and they can just forgo it altogether. But as Epstein said Wednesday, that's not how any of this works

"Our position is that the game should be played the day after the season, just because of the burden of 30 consecutive days with games scheduled and the risk of flying in for a one-off with the possibility of a rain delay given what we went through," Epstein said. "But that's not the rule and that's not the way it's being enforced right now." 

The Cubs are currently leading the division by 2 games over the Brewers with 19 games left to play, with potentially their most crucial game of the season coming Wednesday night with their series and season finale against the Brewers. Adding an extra day of rest amidst this tight postseason run would be invaluable to the Cubs at this point, but they will have to just wait and see. 

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