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US threatens forfeit of PanAm games final
2007-07-19 12:09
by Bob Timmermann

The final in the baseball tournament between the US and Cuba for the Pan American Games gold medal was postponed today because of a soggy field in Rio de Janeiro. US coach Eric Campbell has said that he will forfeit the final if the game is not played Friday.

However, Campbell's protest isn't political, but rather contractual. The U.S. National team is scheduled to play China in Mobile, Alabama on Sunday and the U.S. team needs to time to get out of Brazil and over to Alabama.

"The field has to be fit for play and if there is any more rain that won't happen," Campbell told Reuters. "Our flight is leaving at 6:20 pm on Friday and we have no option but to be on it because we have a contract to play China on July 22nd.

Earlier post about Pan American Games baseball.

Additional note: You can try to watch the final on streaming video through Cuban TV at this link. The game is supposed to start at 8:45 am ET. That would be 9:45 am local time in Rio.

2007-07-19 13:01:16
1.   joejoejoe
Very rude of the US team to even consider forfeiting the game over contractual obligations with China. You can talk to the Chinese baseball federation NOW and explain the circumstances. It rains in China too. It disrespects the Pan Am Games to leave to play an exhibition match instead of the tournament final. The US has hosted this same event twice and participated for 56 years. Would China forfeit the final of an Asian Games event to meet contractual obligations to play an exhibition? Never. So why don't we have the same competitive pride as the Chinese? This is a very sad story.
2007-07-19 14:00:25
2.   Robert Daeley
First, have the Cubans play the Chinese, singing The Internationale in the 7th inning. The US will play the winner, and the announcers can argue whether economic engagement or embargo is the proper capitalist response to a Marxist political entity.
2007-07-19 14:21:45
3.   Xeifrank
Unfortunate, but very understandable. A contract is a contract. You can't control mother nature unless you play in a dome. I don't see how you could really blame anyone for this, other than the person who scheduled the Pan Am final so close to the Chinese exhibition game without enough leeway for bad weather in Rio DJ. More importantly, I'd like to see a Griddle post with a scouting report on the Chinese National team. :)
vr, Xei
2007-07-19 15:09:32
4.   joejoejoe
3 Rain is an act of god, a valid excuse for not meeting the terms of a contract.

Legal definition from, "act of God - An extraordinary and unexpected natural event, such as a hurricane, tornado, earthquake or even the sudden death of a person. An act of God may be a defense against liability for injuries or damages. Under the law of contracts, an act of God often serves as a valid excuse if one of the parties to the contract is unable to fulfill his or her duties -- for instance, completing a construction project on time."

2007-07-19 15:15:19
5.   Xeifrank
4. I'm sure it's valid. $They$ probably want to play the $exhibition$ game against the $Chinese$ National $team$ more than $the$ finals of the $Pan Am Games$ tournament for $whatever$ reason$.
vr, Xei
2007-07-19 15:18:36
6.   Bob Timmermann
All the stories I've read said that the Brazilians built a really cheap field. The first night games were delayed because the lighting was too poor. The field doesn't drain well.

The baseball diamond is shown in a video in my other post on the PanAm Games.

2007-07-19 17:59:25
7.   joejoejoe
6 Thanks for your coverage Bob. I saw the field in your earlier post.

It's not a great field but it looks like every American Legion field I've ever seen which isn't awful either. Brazil has a per capita income of about $2800 per year and isn't a baseball power. I'm not sure what the expectation should be on the quality of their facilities. I do think the PanAm games are more than a joke and the competition should be respected even if the conditions are far from ideal.

2007-07-19 18:50:20
8.   Bob Timmermann
The PanAm game organizers are apparently planning to take out the infield grass and convert the diamond for softball tomorrow regardless of whether or not the final is played.,,-6791300,00.html

2007-07-19 18:51:46
9.   Bob Timmermann
Also there is no rain in the forecast for Rio tomorrow.
2007-07-19 18:56:45
10.   joejoejoe
9 They could always move the final indoors and play Pesapallo. a double header or something later in the 5 game series against China in Mobile, Alabama.

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