Time out or time in for Baseball
It was almost 10:30 (PDT) last Sunday night and I had just laid my head down on my pillow looking forward to resting in the arms of Pasithea, (the Greek Goddess of rest and relaxation), when the vibrato of my bedside phone abruptly brought me to life.
I picked up the phone and all I heard was…”did you see it, did you see it?” As I wiped the sleep from my eyes, I recognized the voice of my sister Barbara. I looked at the clock on my bed stand and realized for her it was 1:30 (EDT) in the morning.
“Barbara, what are you talking about?”
“The game! The game! The Sox beat the Yankees in the 11th and it was a cliff-hanger”.
“Barbara, I ‘m in bed, we’ll talk in the morning”.
I rolled over and the next thing I knew it was 7 A.M. If you knew my sister, or for that matter Boston Baseball fans, this was not an unusual reaction. Yeah! … But the game took 4 hours and 46 minutes. The Red Sox seem to play the longest games currently and on the other coast, the Seattle Mariners play the shortest ones.
So, I decided to do some research on the longest and shortest games in major league history and for that matter, in professional baseball. Guess what? Boston has hosted the three longest games in modern history.
That’s not good! Many people, who don’t understand baseball, think watching a game is like watching grass grow. I don’t! To me, a baseball game is an intricate chess match played on a board of beautiful green grass.
As a depression baby, baseball was the only Major League Professional Sport I knew. The bang-bang and swift reaction of today’s other major sports: football and basketball, in those years, languished mostly in the semi-professional ranks. Of course, there was the National Hockey League, which had only 6 teams at the time… 2 Canadian and 4 American. To most of us at that time, it was a Canadian game in which we had little interest.
Today, in this social media age of pod casting, telecasting, TVOing and digital replay, the dynamics have changed. Today’s generation seeks instant gratification. The pace of life is faster and most sports deliver that feeling. So, to many, baseball is known as the “ho-hum” game.
This is not true! It is a game where not only superior physical ability as well as mental ability is employed in each game to bring about the strategy that mangers and the coaches must utilize.
Never the less, there have been, over the years, many long games which have tired out even the most dedicated fans… during the course of a single season, some 70 million plus fans pay to be at the ballpark. Something must be right.
So, dear reader, I decided to delve into what have been the longest and shortest games throughout baseball’s history.
The longest recorded game in baseball history took place on May 1, 1920. It was between the Boston Braves and the Brooklyn Robins (?). The game lasted 8 hours and 22 minutes. The game was finally called a draw with the score tied 1-1. What’s more … both starting pitchers pitched every inning. THERE WAS NO 100 PITCH COUNT… obviously!
On the other hand, the shortest nine-inning game in baseball history was played in 1926. The New York Giants beat the Phillies 6-1 … the time, 51 minutes.
Please don’t get me wrong! I love all sports and thoroughly enjoy the nanosecond gratification I get from NFL, NHL and NBA games. On the other hand, I also enjoy the quietude of golf as well as the intermediate pace of tennis.
In other words, I am a “Sports Fan”. I hope you are too and get as much enjoyment as I do on a daily basis.
By the way, the most number of innings ever played in a single game of professional baseball was 33. It took over two different days to complete. I won’t tell you who the teams were, but for fun, why not check it out?
Time out or time in for Baseball