Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Longest Day

I heard the end of the third game of the World Series this morning, sometime after 2 a.m. Eastern time. I didn't see it because my eyes were closed, as they are most nights at that time, but I was awake and listening. I heard them say at five hours and 41 minutes it was the longest game in World Series history, but only a tie for most innings, 14.

And they said the other 14-inning game was Boston beating Brooklyn 2-1 in the 1916 World Series, so I looked up the details this morning at Baseball Almanac. The time of game was reported as 2:32.

How can a 14-inning game take twice as long now as 89 years ago? There were 17 pitchers last night, and many of those pitching changes came during innings. Back in 1916, both pitchers went all the way, with Babe Ruth outpitching some guy named Sherry Smith. Fox wasn't producing the show in 1916, so that also sped things up considerably.

Maybe they can't prevent games from going into extra innings and dragging on, but I do have one suggestion for moving things up by 40 minutes – cut out the pregame show. No one cares what Kevin Kennedy and Jeanne Zelasko have to say. Get rid of them, start the game at five minutes after the hour, and maybe we can get done a few minutes before 2:00.

Useless Factoid o' the Day: Fox does not have a monopoly on worthless information. While browsing Baseball Almanac, I found that the winning pitcher for the Cubs in the deciding game of the 1908 World Series was Orval Overall. His bio link says "Nickname: None." With a name like that, you don't need a nickname. With two wins in the series, I guess you could say he was the best pitcher Overall.

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