NEW YORK - Even Chone Figgins couldn't have splashed his way through this.
The white tarpaulin over the Yankee Stadium infield billowed in the wind Saturday and a steady rain fell. More than 31/2 hours before Game 4 was scheduled to start, the game was postponed.
The game was rescheduled for 7:55 tonight - a move the Yankees vehemently opposed.
New York vigorously argued for a 4 p.m. start, because if the Yankees win, the teams will have to fly across the country for an 8:30 p.m. Game 5 on Monday.
Their protests fell on deaf ears, however. According to several Yankee sources, MLB and the players' union acceded to the wishes of the Fox television network, which broadcasts the NFL on Sunday afternoons and has the rights to the Game 4 telecast. As part of the agreement to start Sunday night's game later and play a potential Game 5 in the late afternoon in California, according to sources, the union required that the ALCS - originally scheduled to begin Tuesday - will start on Wednesday if the Yankees force a fifth game.
"It's out of our control," Angels manager Mike Scioscia said. "We'll play at midnight if they tell us to play at midnight. We'll be ready."
SWEET RELIEF: Had Game 4 been played Saturday, as scheduled, it would have dulled the Angels' biggest edge. The rainout brought a day of rest to the late-inning threesome of Scot Shields, Kelvim Escobar and Francisco Rodriguez, who combined to close out Games 2 and 3.
"We'll cut right to the chase: It's big for us," Scioscia said. "This day off is big for us."
Both bullpens have pitched 102/3 innings this series. Angels relievers have a 2.53 earned run average, while Yankees relievers have a 6.94 mark.
WHITE SOX: The team will work out today and Monday and wait to hear who they'll play in the next round beginning Tuesday at U.S. Cellular Field.
The White Sox were 3-3 against the Yankees this season and 4-6 against the Angels. They should, at least, be the more rested team.