120 Years Of Tension: Part 3
The 1897 pennant race quickly became a two team grudge match that went down to the wire. They split the series at 6 games apiece leading in to the final match of a three game set on September 27th at Baltimore’s Union Park. The winner would most likely become the pennant winner with both teams facing weaker teams to finish the season. Over 100 Royal Routers joined the team by taking trains and boats in the day long trek to Baltimore. They brought a marching band to help silence the Oriole fan base. Despite a tense situation in the previous two games, the Boston fans were well received in the finale. Some 30,000 fans packed the stadium and all available fences to watch the epic game. Along newspaper row At one point, Baltimore fans applauded the Routers for their loyal support of their team. The Routers responded by playing Maryland, My Maryland. This show of respect was not lost by the hometown fans. The Maryland anthem was written after the 6 th Massachusetts was attacked during the Pratt Street Riot on April 19 th 1861.
The game itself would be one to forget in Baltimore as the Beaneaters thumped the O’s 19-10. The lead would change 5 times by the fifth inning. A disastrous 7th where Baltimore allowed nine runs, spelled doom for the hometown hero’s. Boston would go on to win the 1897 pennant by one game. Despite this loss, the two teams would meet again in the Temple Cup, the short lived predecessor to the World Series. Baltimore would lose the first of the seven game series but rally to win four straight to take the cup.
The upcoming series against the Red Sox will feature more drama and intrigue just like the days of old.