Rogers Centre dome will be open for Blue Jays-Orioles wild card game

MLB commissioner Rob Manfred joins Blair and Brunt to discuss how engaging the wild card format has been for baseball and the fans, and why he doesn’t see the playoffs expanding anytime soon.

The roof at Rogers Centre will be open for Tuesday’s wild-card game between the Toronto Blue Jays and Baltimore Orioles, the Blue Jays confirmed.

The dome has never been open for a Blue Jays playoff game before.

“There’s a set of rules we use as to whether the roof would be open or closed,” Major League Baseball commissioner Rob Manfred told Jeff Blair and Stephen Brunt on Sportsnet 590 The Fan Tuesday. “It was looking [Monday] that it would fall into that category that the roof would be open.”

The decision to open or close the Rogers Centre roof is controlled by the commissioner’s office during the post-season. During the regular season it’s up to the team.

“We love the idea of it being open,” Manfred said “It’s essentially temperature, wind and probability of rain are the three big variables.”

It’s expected to be 18 degrees Celsius in Toronto Tuesday night with a 10 per cent chance of precipitation, an easterly wind of 15 km/h with gusts up to 26 km/h, so MLB gave the thumbs up.

This could end up being beneficial to the Blue Jays. The team was 34-17 with a .274 batting average and 1.49 home runs per game with the dome open in 2016. When it was closed they went 12-18 with a .236 average and 1.03 home runs per game.

First pitch is slated to take place at 8:08 p.m. ET with coverage on Sportsnet beginning at 7:00 p.m. ET.

The loser-goes-home game is a nerve-wracking experience for fans and players alike but that’s what you get when only a handful of teams qualify for the post-season. Manfred wouldn’t have it any other way.

“We do take pride in the fact that making the playoffs in baseball is a special thing,” he said in regards to potential playoff expansion in the future. “It’s the most difficult sport. We’re the most selective in terms of post-season play…I don’t think there’s quite the temptation that some of the other sports have to expand the number of teams involved.”

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