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1930s & Earlier / 26-Inning MLB Game - 1920
The longest game (by innings) in Major League Baseball's long history was a 26-inning, 1-1 tie. It was a National League game between the Boston Braves and Brooklyn Robins played at Braves Field in Boston on May 1, 1920. Amazingly, both starting pitchers--Brooklyn's Leon Cadore and Boston's Joe Oeschger--went the distance. Since night baseball didn't begin in MLB until 1935, the game was stopped by plate umpire Barry McCormick due to impending darkness. It had to be replayed in its entirety, but all the stats from the 26-inning tie counted. Remarkably, by modern standards, the game took only 3 hours and 50 minutes to play. It had started at 3:00 p.m., as was the custom in those days, and ended at 6:50 p.m. Several players unsuccessfully lobbied umpire McCormick to extend the game one more inning so they could say they played the equivalent of three nine-inning games. The press box at Braves Field did not have electric lights so reporters and telegraphers had to submit their accounts of the record-setting game using candlelight. Some trivia from the game: The score had been tied 1-1 since the sixth inning. The attendance was about 3,500. Cadore faced 95 Boston batters. Oeschger pitched to a mere 90 Robins, but his 21 consecutive scoreless innings established a record. Braves' first baseman Walter Holke recorded the ridiculous total of 43 putouts. Boston's second baseman, Charlie Pick, set a record too, but not a positive one: His one-game total of 11 official at-bats without a hit has never been matched. Years later Cadore remembered the aftereffects of the game. "My arm stiffened. I couldn't raise it to comb my hair for three days," he said. "After seven days of rest I was back taking my regular turn. I never had a sore arm before or after the game. I suppose the nervous energy of trying to win the game gave me the strength to keep me going."