When the dollar is more important

The Houston Astros were in contention for the National League Wild Card race when hurricane Ike came to town. Now they are spiraling out of control and destined to miss the playoffs for the third straight season.

On the Friday night the hurricane made landfall, the Astros were set to square off against the Chicago Cubs. It was an extremely pivotal game, with the Astros just three games back in the Wild Card race. They had the best record since the All-Star break by a large margin, but everything changed when the storm came rushing into town.

Their momentum died. The fun atmosphere in the dugout and clubhouse disappeared, as did the profits that owner Drayton McClane would have received, and perhaps their playoff hopes.

The Astros and Major League Baseball held out hope that they could still get the games played in Houston. They were wrong by a longshot, as everyone can see by now.

Instead of postponing the games until the end of the season, Bud Selig, MLB’s commissioner, decided it would be best to move the games to Milwaukee.

I was furious when I found out that the games had been moved to Milwaukee. My mind wasn’t as focused on the Astros as much as normal, but it would be nice to see them play to get my mind off of the cleanup I was doing to my house. But just the fact that it had been moved to Milwaukee angered many fans.

The Cubs have a huge fan base that spreads out to all regions of the U.S. Milwaukee was no different. Miller Park, the Brewers stadium, is often called “Wrigley North” because of the vast amount of Cub fans at the games.

Maybe it was just me, and most of the Astros fan base, but I found it kind of strange that MLB would move the game to a “neutral field,” that just so happens is the home to the Brewers, the team that Bud Selig used to own. They could have played better, but their minds were clearly not in the game because of all the stuff going on back home. They ended up getting no-hit and getting only one hit the next game.

Astros pitcher Doug Brocail was not able to contact his wife until the last game had been played. Pitcher Chris Sampson never reached his family while in Milwaukee. MLB wanted them to play a game when some of the players had no clue what was going on with their families? Talk about a disgrace to the game.

Some players were going off of a few hours of sleep and were forced to make it to the airport to jump on a plane and fly to Milwaukee. First basemen Lance Berkman had to drive from San Marcos to Houston the morning they left. He had to leave at four in the morning.

But money always rules. That is all people care about and they didn’t care one bit about what was going on in Houston. It would have been a breath of fresh air for the people of the Houston area to be able to watch the Astros after cleaning up all day, instead of getting angry about where the game was played, just so Mr. Selig could make his money.

Selig even put out a full page ad in the Sports Section of the Houston Chronicle on Sunday explaining why he made the decision to move the games. But how many people got to see it being that a ton of people didn’t have power or didn’t care to read the newspaper? This was a tragedy to the Astros and all their fans in Houston recovering from hurricane Ike. I encourage you to send a letter or make a call to the MLB Commissioners office.

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