Ten-cent beer nights were common promotions at ballgames in the 1970s, but none turned out quite like this one at Cleveland Stadium.
An unruly crowd of 26,000 included fans leaping onto the field, mooning players and shooting off fireworks. Finally, as the Indians were mounting a comeback in the ninth inning, a fan tried to steal Texas Rangers outfielder Jeff Burroughs’ hat. He fell down, and players from both teams, thinking he’d been attacked, ran out onto the field. A free-for-all ensued, and the game was declared a forfeit.
Since then, Clevelanders have taken an almost perverse pride in it. Nearly a half-century later, you can even buy 10-cent beer night T-shirts.
Vince Guerrieri is a journalist in the Cleveland area. He wants to go back in time and tell 11-year-old him about getting to interview Doug Dieken for Cleveland Magazine.