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1970s / Ten-Cent Beer Night Riot
On June 4, 1974 the Cleveland Indians held the most short-sighted promotion in pro sports history: Ten-Cent Beer Night. There was no limit to the amount of 10-ounce Stroh's beers one could buy for a dime each. Hey, what could possibly go wrong? The promotion drew a crowd of 25,000 people--about three times what the Indians were usually drawing in 1974. The souses chugged down more than 65,000 cups of beer. The effects of the discount brews caused rowdyism to break out in the stands from the get-go. It eventually spread to the field. Among the lowlights: Fans tossed firecrackers at the Rangers players. A naked man ran onto the field and slid into second base. A father and son duo ran onto the field and mooned the crowd. The climax occurred in the bottom of the ninth inning. A fan entered the field and tried to swipe Jeff Burroughs' glove. When he resisted, punches were exchanged and more fans entered the field to join the frey. Both the Rangers and the Indians came out of their dugouts wielding bats to defend Burroughs. Mayhem ensued. Fans ripped chairs from the stadium and tossed them in all directions. The game was abandoned by the umpires with the score tied 5-5. The visiting Texas Rangers were awarded a forfeit win. The Indians had several more discount beer promotions scheduled--and still intended to hold them--but the American League outlawed them.