Archive for April 6th, 2011

The City of H-Town is prepared to take a major step today if it votes to implement Rebuild Houston.  We can finally end the days of kicking the can down the road.  We can finally get serious about taking on flooding.  We had an election on this, so let’s finally settle this today!  Stay tuned!

Noted H-Town engineer Jeff Ross showed up at the H-Town City Council meeting yesterday to support Rebuild Houston.  Jeff talked about flooding and mentioned the only ‘Stros game in Astrodome history that was rained out due to flooding.  Jeff said he had tickets to the game.  Here is from the Chron’s Ken Hoffman on the 1976 rainout:

OK, Mike Acosta (‘Stros Authentication Director), tell me about the weirdest day in Astros history — when a home game at the Astrodome was rained out. It’s always mentioned in baseball trivia books. But tell me how it’s possible for a game in a domed stadium to be washed out.

“That’s one of my favorite stories, too,” Acosta said. “It happened on Tuesday, June 15, 1976, so its anniversary is this week. The Astros were supposed to play the Pittsburgh Pirates with a 7:35 p.m. start. The night before was very uneventful. The Pirates beat the Astros 2-1, with Jerry Reuss the winning pitcher. Al Oliver hit a home run in the fourth inning off our starter J.R. Richard.

“But the next morning, it started raining. …”

And wouldn’t stop.

“It was like a tropical storm. It was raining hard, and it just kept coming down,” Acosta said. “It got to the point where the streets around the Astrodome were flooded and impassable. Fans couldn’t get to the stadium. Neither could Astrodome workers. Remember, the Astrodome floor was 45 feet below ground level. So the lower ramps and entries were flooded, too.

“Both teams were here. Players started arriving around 1 p.m., when it was still possible to get to the stadium. They had to be dressed by 3 or 3:30 p.m. The Pirates team bus made it through, as did the Astros coming by themselves.”

Around 5 p.m., with rain still pouring down and no letup in sight, Astros officials asked the umpires to call off the game. Security, concession workers and fans couldn’t get to the stadium. Even though the game could have been played — both teams were there, and the field was dry — the umpires agreed and the game was postponed … on account of rain.

Astros called all the media outlets. It was the lead story on the 5 and 6 p.m. TV news.

“Concession workers set up a buffet and tables behind second base, and both teams ate dinner on the field together. The players were in their uniforms, but some of them were wearing shower flip-flops on their feet. The Astrodome staff ate with the players, too,” Acosta said.

A few of the Astros, including Larry Dierker, finished dinner and decided to climb to the top of the Dome and crawl on the catwalk.

The Astros offered refunds or said that fans could exchange their tickets for another game. Although the Pirates were coming back to Houston in August, the rained-out game was made up as part of a doubleheader in Pittsburgh in July.

Ironically, a new roof was built on the Astrodome before the start of the 1976 season. The old roof had sprung some leaks. The new roof was rain-proof. And still a game was rained out.

Tickets for Astros games in 1976 ranged from $1.50 for pavilion seats to $4.50 for field boxes.

There was something unusual about Astros tickets in the old days. Because the Astros were the only team to play under a roof, their tickets were missing something that appeared on every other team’s tickets.

Rain checks.

Commentary remembers that night.  I was holed up at the Rice Hotel on the eve of the Lone Star State Democratic Party State Convention.  That’s when the deals were cut with my good friend State Party Chair Calvin Guest (who is no longer with us) on DNC slots for Latinos and African Americans. 

Hey, if you got a rainout in an indoor facility, you know we have a flooding problem! 

Commentary has heard bits and pieces about the City of H-Town City Council Redistricting plan that will be unveiled this morning by the Mayor.  Some folks will be happy and some folks will be upset.  Predicted reactions from throughout the city will come in the form of  “oohs”, “ahhs”,  “ouches”, “yikes” , “ugly”, “sweet”, “drats”, and “screwed!”

CM Jones was a little upset yesterday.  She apparently hasn’t been shown the proposed redistricting maps.  Show her the maps!

From my pal Edgar on the question yesterday on retired MLB jerseys:  In the MLB, what jersey number has been retired the most by teams? Technically speaking, it is also Jackie Robinson’s 42, which has been retired by all teams! 

Picky, picky!

Eight former MLBers have had their jersey numbers retired by two different teams. One former MLBer has had his jersey number retired by three different teams.  Name the nine players. (I don’t want Edgar to chime in Jackie Robinson’s numero 42 has been retired by 30 different MLB teams.)

Commentary is trying to figure out what a federal government shutdown looks like this Friday.  Will I get my mail on Saturday?  Will the ‘Stros home opener against the Fish still be played this Friday?  Do I still have to abstain from meat this Friday and is the Lenten season also called off?  Stay tuned!

Hank Aaron of course had his numero 44 retired by the Braves and Brewers.

Rod Carew of course had his numero 29 retried by the Twins and Angels.

Rollie Fingers of course had his numero 34 retired by the A’s and Brewers.

Carlton Fisk of course had his numero 27 retired by the Red Sox and his numero 72 retired by the White Sox.

Reggie Jackson of course had his numero 9 retired by the A’s and his numero 44 retired by the Yankees.

Greg Maddox had his numero 31 retired by The ATL and the Cubbies.

Frank Robinson had his numero 20 retired by the Reds and B’More.

Casey Stengel had his numero 37 retried by the Mets and Yankees.

Nolan Ryan had his numero 30 retired by the Angels and his numero 34 retired by the ‘Stros and Rangers.

Got it!

I’m not in a mood to comment on our 0-4 start – period!



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