America’s pastime, a rainy night, an embarrassing grounds crew snafu in the president’s hometown, and one of the culprits? Obamacare*, according to some Chicago Sun-Times sources.
When a heavy flash rainstorm interrupted a game at Wrigley Field Tuesday night in the 5th inning, the Cubs were up two on wildcard hopefuls, the San Francisco Giants. But as the rain fell, the grounds crew was unable to coax the giant tarp across the entire infield. Nowhere to be seen is the lickety-split efficiency characteristic of MLB groundskeepers, but a team struggling under the ever-increasing weight of an increasingly rain-soaked tarp lying awkwardly caddy wampus across the field. Fans can be heard chanting, “Pull! Pull! Pull!” but to not much avail. Here’s video of their struggles respectfully set to Benny Hill music (Sorry, guys):
As CBS Chicago reported, the result was “A field that was an absolute mess, one that after dozens and dozens of bags of a drying agent and a 4 hour, 34-minute delay still wasn’t playable.” The game was called and the Cubs initially awarded the 2-0 W, but the Giants then launched one of the only successful protests in recent MLB memory. The game was resumed Thursday, and the Giants won 5-3.
But what caused the problem? Mere surprise weather system or the unintended consequences of overbearing regulation**?
Add the Affordable Care Act – or, specifically, the big-business Cubs’ response to it – to the causes behind Tuesday night’s tarp fiasco and rare successful protest by the San Francisco Giants.
The staffing issues that hamstrung the grounds crew Tuesday during a mad dash with the tarp under a sudden rainstorm were created in part by a wide-ranging reorganization last winter of game-day personnel, job descriptions and work limits designed to keep the seasonal workers – including much of the grounds crew – under 130 hours per month, according to numerous sources with direct knowledge.
That’s the full-time worker definition under “Obamacare,” which requires employer-provided healthcare benefits for “big businesses” such as a major league team.
“Cheap,” said one of three high-ranking officials from other organizations the Sun-Times contacted Thursday – all of whom fall below the Cubs on Forbes’ annual revenues list.
“Staffing, hours and scheduling had absolutely nothing to do with Tuesday’s freak occurrence,” Green said. “There was no rain in the forecast, the umpires saw no rain in the forecast. This was an exercise that is done before every game. Typically if there is rain in the forecast, the morning facilities crew stays on to assist the night game crew.
“In this case, since there was no rain in the forecast, so the morning crew was not on hand. This is typically why if there’s a game a rain system is coming, you may see upwards of 20 or 25 people on the field. In this case we had adequate numbers. There were enough guys to pull the tarp.
“Unfortunately with this freak occurrence weather system, along with the mishap with the roller, it unfortunately led to a lengthy delay. The good news is per the rules in baseball… it was resolved.”
The president’s a White Sox fan, guys. His baseball church is the well-known, ahem, Cominskey Field. No need to make excuses for the destruction he has wrought upon this storied star in America’s constellation of beautiful baseball parks in this, its centenary. This may very well have been the plan all along, Cloward-Piven style***.
**Trolling so hard right now.
***Triple flip troll dismount, stuck the landing