April 21, 1991: The Pirates stage the biggest additional-inning comeback in MLB history

In Some Cases, it’s simply not your day. Other times, it’s absolutely yours. The Cubs and Pirates most likely experienced both of those sensations on April 21,1991 That was the day the Cubs blew 2 big leads in Pittsburgh as the Pirates staged the biggest additional-inning comeback in MLB history.

While the game is now thought about a traditional in Pittsburgh– among couple of for the club post-1979– it started really common. Some may even state boring. The Buccos and Cubs were scoreless heading into the bottom of the 5th on a cold, uninspiring Sunday afternoon at 3 Rivers Arena with a combined 3 hits in between them. When Pittsburgh scratched throughout 2 runs, that’s. The Cubs responded to right back with 3 runs in the top of the 6th. Still a relatively common game.

However things got truly fascinating.

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The Cubs scored 4 in the top of the 8th to take a 7-2lead In those days, prior to everybody was homer-happy, this was basically an ensuredwin the Pirates scored 4 in the bottom of the 8th to cut Chicago’s lead to 7-6, which held into the bottom of the ninth. With the Pirates down to their last out and the connecting run a second, pinch-hitter Gary Varsho smacked a double off reducer Dave Smith to knot the game 7-7.

Very little took place for either team in the 10 th, however the 11 th is what took the game into overdrive.

The Cubs, maybe figured out– and mad after blowing that 5-run lead– blew up for 5 runs in their half of the inning, stressed by Andre Dawson’s grand slam off Pittsburgh reducer Bob Patterson. It was Dawson’s second of the series.

“The Cubs have put this game away,” wailed Harry Caray, positive in the 12 -7 lead.

Not so fast, Harry.

In the bottom of the 11 th, the Pirates put their first 3 batters on base versus Cubs righty Heathcliff Slocumb. Not desiring things to leave hand once again, manager Don Zimmer, who was on his method to being fired after simply 37 games, went to righty Mike Bielecki to put out thefire The fire just got hotter.

Bielecki dealt with 6 batters and permitted 5 of them to reach. The agonizing breakdown:

  • A 2-run double (Jay Bell),
  • Sac fly RBI (Andy Van Slyke)
  • Stroll (Bobby Bonilla) RBI single (Barry Bonds)
  • Stroll (Gary Redus)
  • 2-run walk-off double (Don Slaught)
  • Pirates win, 13-12

“The game is over, and the Pirates, in unbelievable fashion, have won another ballgame,” Caray stated, prior to ultimately arriving at an unfortunate version of his signature “Holy cow!”

The 6 runs Pittsburgh scored in the 11 th was the biggest additional-inning comeback in MLB history, later on equated to by the Diamondbacks versus the Dodgers on Sept. 27, 2011.

A disastrous loss for the Cubs. A big win for the Pirates.

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“It was weird,” Bonds, who scored the winning run, informed press reporters after thegame “Here’s a series when the Hawk (Dawson) hits two grand slams. You do that and you’re supposed to win. That just doesn’t seem right.”

The Cubs were simply as perplexed.

“I can’t say enough about today,” Dawson informed press reporters. “It’s a tough loss. It was a strange game on a strange day. It was cold and miserable and we had been out there for about four hours. You score five runs and they only have one chance to beat you, you figure you’re going to get out of it.”

( Side note: The Cubs constantly appear to be on the losing end of timeless unusualgames See likewise April 17, 1976, and May 17, 1979).

If you’re tired of checking out this game and would rather see it, here’s a CliffsNotes version that MLB assembled a couple of years back.

However if you need to eliminate a long time (and let’s be sincere, you do) you can see all 3 hours on YouTube.