Called on account of Easter. This month marks the 30th anniversary of the longest game in baseball history which of course took place right here in Pawtucket at McCoy Stadium. The game started on April 18th, 1981 and lasted eight hours and 32 innings before being stopped. It ended two months later in one more inning — all the major networks were there — with the Paw Sox finally prevailing against the Rochester Red Wings, 3-2, in 33 innings.
The event was featured on CBS News (video after the jump) and is the subject of a new book by New York Times columnist, Dan Barry — Bottom of the 33rd: Hope, Redemption, and Baseball’s Longest Game. Barry was interviewed on NPR.
Barry talks in the interview about the fact that when the game was suspended, there were roughly 19 people still in the stands, who had spent eight hours in the cold. When it resumed for what became the final inning, it had become a well-known game and Major League Baseball was on strike besides. So it attracted a lot of attention, meaning that 6000 people showed up, all of whom could claim to have attended baseball’s longest game, but few of whom had stuck it out on Easter morning, 1981, until just after four.
Whether by accident or design, the Pawtucket Red Sox happen to be spending this Easter up in New York. . . playing the Rochester Red Wings. You can listen at the Paw Sox site — game starts at 1:05pm.