Your 2013 Opening Day Weather Warranty Round-Up

For those who may have been caught unawares, yesterday marked the start of the 2013 Minor League season. Clearly there is and will be much to talk about — read Promo Preview for an indication of just how much –  but today I wanted to focus on the most pressing matter I could possibly think of:

Did the teams who issued weather-related guarantees see their guarantees come to pass? Or were fans left out in the cold?

Let’s start with the Indianapolis Indians, who have long been the preeminent meteorological guarantors of the International League.

Weather_Guarantee_w6o2ix4a_34qht101

Guarantee: 60 degrees

Actual Game Time Temperature: 56 degrees

Result: “Fans Win 60 degree guarantee,” was the headline of a press release the team put out this morning. As a result of this “win”  “[A]ll Tribe fans in attendance to the contest have won a free ticket to any 2013 April home game of their choice.”

Team: Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders

Take it away, Mr. President: 

Guarantee: 60 degrees

Actual Game Time Temperature: 51 degrees

Result: Per Crain: “To back my guarantee, if it is not 60 degrees on April 4, then anyone who comes to Opening Day will get a free Sunday through Thursday ticket any day the rest of the entire 2013 season.”

Enjoy your non-weekend free baseball, RailRiders fans!

Team: Gwinnett Braves

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Guarantee: Temperatures will not dip below 50 Degrees.

 Actual Game Time Temperature: There was no game, as it was rained out.

Result: Mired in uncertainty, as fans on the team’s Facebook page have spent the afternoon parsing the text of the team’s original press release. Some have advanced the argument that since the temperature was below 50 yesterday, then fans should be awarded a ticket voucher in addition to the one that Opening Day ticket holders are already slated to receive as a result of the rainout.

But not so fast! The original press release stipulated that the G-Braves “were prepared to offer free tickets to those in attendance.” As Facebook fan Trey Farr pointed out, “Since they postponed it, no one [was] in attendance on Thursday, April 4.”

I think that the G-Braves should award free tickets to Mr. Farr, simply for having such a razor-sharp legalistic mind.

Team: Peoria Chiefs

Opening_Day_0ataqy7t_njacps5r

Guarantee: 62 degrees

Actual Game Time Temperature: 59 degrees

Result: “All fans with a ticket will receive a free ticket to another Chiefs home game in April or May.”

59 degrees and a free ticket? That’s pretty much win-win! (But, alas, the Chiefs lost.)

So there you have it: there were four Opening Day weather guarantees (that I was aware of), and teams went 0-for-3 with a rainout. Small sample size, yes, but I think the lesson here is that Opening Day weather guarantees are destined to fail.

benjamin.hill@mlb.com

twitter.com/bensbiz

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