Yankees, Phillies postpone games due to hazardous air quality created by wildfire smoke

Several sporting events have been postponed Wednesday because of concerns over hazardous air quality issues caused by smoke blanketing the skies across the Northeast.

Major League Baseball officials opted to postpone the New York Yankees and Chicago White Sox game Wednesday night as New York City is experiencing the worst air quality conditions in the city's history because of Canadian wildfire smoke.

The Yankees and the White Sox played through a thick haze Tuesday when New York City was under unhealthy air quality levels, but by Wednesday, the levels worsened to hazardous levels on the Air Quality Index.

"Tonight's Yankees-White Sox game (Wednesday, June 7) is rescheduled because of poor air quality due to smoke from the Canadian wildfires," the Yankees said in a statement.

The game will now happen at 4:05 p.m. Thursday, becoming the first of a doubleheader. Tickets for the June 7 game will be valid for the rescheduled game. 

By Wednesday, when MLB postponed the game, New York City's AQI was over 400 ppm, with 500 being the highest on the AQI scale.

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A general view of hazy conditions resulting from Canadian wildfires at Yankee Stadium before the game between the Chicago White Sox and the New York Yankees on June 7, 2023, in New York, New York. (Photo by New York Yankees/Getty Images) 

The postponement has left some fans feeling disappointed. Tracy Lee said he and his granddaughter were visiting New York City from Minnesota and hoping to watch Wednesday night's game. 

"We’re here. We can’t wait to go," Lee told FOX Weather outside Yankees Stadium. "I’ve been waiting 45 years to watch a Yankees game live. I watch them when they come and play in Minnesota, but it isn’t the same."

The Philadelphia Phillies also postponed their game against the Detroit Tigers because of air quality concerns. The game has been rescheduled for 6:05 p.m. Thursday. All Wednesday tickets will be valid at Thursday's game.

These are the first MLB games to be postponed because of smoky conditions since the San Francisco Giants game against the Seattle Mariners in September 2020.

In Upstate New York, the threat of poor air quality forced the postponement of the Syracuse Mets game. The team said their Tuesday's game against the Lehigh IronPigs' would be rescheduled to a later date.

More than baseball

Earlier on Wednesday, the National Women's Soccer League opted to postpone the NJ/NY Gotham FC and Orlando Pride match due to the air quality conditions. 

According to the WNBA, the game between the Minnesota Lynx and the New York Liberty that was scheduled to be played Wednesday night has been postponed because of air quality concerns. It was not immediately clear when the game would be played.