Record-setting temperatures are expected at Dodger Stadium on Tuesday when the Los Angeles Dodgers and Houston Astros square off in Game 1 of the World Series. The National Weather Service is forecasting 99 degrees for first pitch at 5:09 p.m.
Temperatures in the hours leading up to the start were likely to be over 100 degrees. The previous record-high was 94 degrees at Bank One Ballpark in Phoenix, where the Arizona Diamondbacks hosted the New York Yankees in Game 1 of the 2001 World Series.
The uncomfortable conditions figure to be particularly grueling for starting pitchers Clayton Kershaw and Dallas Keuchel. “This weather is always beautiful,” Keuchel said. “It’s that dry heat. So it’s going to be hot.
“It’s going to be hotter than normal, but at the same time I like to sweat, I like to get that perspiration, and make sure I have a firm grip on the ball. And, I mean, it’s the World Series, so if it’s a little bit hotter than usual, that’s fine with me. There’s no place I’d rather be.”
While Houston certainly is no stranger to sweltering weather, coupled with humidity, the Astros have the benefit of playing indoors at Minute Maid Park.
Kershaw, a Texas native, also doesn’t expect the scorching temperatures to affect the outcome of the game. “Yeah, it is going to be hot.” he said. “But, no, I don’t think it’s going to change anything.
“I think by 5:00 the sun will be down. They’re from Houston, I’m from Texas. It’s going to be hot for everybody. We’re all used to it. It will be fine.”
As the sun begins to set toward the middle innings of the contest, the conditions on the field should improve for the players. By the end of the game, the National Weather Service is predicting temperatures will drop into the 80s.
The weather is similar to that Kershaw pitched in for Game 1 of the 2014 National League Division Series against the St. Louis Cardinals. The Dodgers jumped out to an early lead and Kershaw largely breezed through the outing before seemingly becoming fatigued in the seventh inning.
The Cardinals rallied to steal Game 1, and eventually took the series in four games.