Disco Demolition Night 30 Years Later
Posted on July 6, 2009
Yeah, so Joel Zumaya and Fernando Rodney ruined our night tonight. We’re used to that. Take heart. The Tigers still cling to first place.
Doesn’t do much for you? Me either.
So instead of cursing the Tigers bullpen, let’s travel back 30 years to July 12, 1979 and revisit Disco Demolition Night at Comiskey Park, courtesy of Joe LaPointe‘s article in yesterday’s New York Times.
Unlike the commonplace pyrotechnics of Zumaya/Rodney, this doubleheader included the on-field destruction of disco albums between games. Then things got, well, unruly. As Alan Trammell sums it up:
“The outfielders were definitely a little scared and Ronnie (LeFlore) wasn’t usually afraid of anything.”
The thing I remember most about that game was watching Sox owner Bill Veeck limp out on the field with his wooden leg — I had no idea he lost an appendage — to beg the rock-and-rollers to get off the field (and keep their rainchecks!). And I can still hear George Kell trying to describe the action without falling into a “kids-these-days” rant. (Or did he? Does anyone else remember?)
Even Dave Dombrowski, then a 22-year-old gopher for White Sox GM Roland Hemond, had a role in keeping the peace.
Oh, as for the games, the Tigers swept the double-dip 4-1 in the opener and then won the nightcap in a 9-0 forfeit. The victories brought the Tigers within 14 games of the division lead.
What are your memories of Disco Demolition Night?