Final in 15

Series: Game 1 of 3

Pittsburgh leads 1-0 (as of 6/20)

Game 1: Friday, June 20
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in 15
Pittsburgh5
Game 2: Saturday, June 21
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in 15
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Game 3: Sunday, June 22
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Pittsburgh5

Indians 4

(29-42, 13-24 away)

Pirates 5

(30-40, 12-22 home)

    7:05 PM ET, June 20, 2003

    PNC Park, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 

    56789101112131415 R H E
    CLE 00010000000 4 18 2
    PIT 00000000001 5 10 3

    W: S. Torres (5-2)

    L: D. Baez (0-5)

    Pittsburgh wins longest game in five years

    PITTSBURGH (AP) -- Randall Simon was too tired to play one more inning, so he took it upon himself to end the longest night most of the Pirates or Indians have experienced in the majors.

    Randall Simon
    Simon

    Simon homered over the center-field fence leading off the 15th inning and the Pirates shook off two rain delays, numerous Cleveland threats and their longest game in five years to beat Indians 5-4 Friday night.

    The game ended at 1:37 a.m. ET, more than six hours after it started, thanks to two rain delays totaling exactly two hours. It was the Pirates' latest finish since PNC Park opened in 2001.

    Simon's drive came off Indians closer Danys Baez (0-5). Simon leaped onto home plate as his teammates, many wearing their hats turned backward rally-cap style, jumped on top of him, weary but joyous.

    Two innings before, Simon's hand was so sore after he jammed it running the bases that he was ordered to bunt, something he rarely does.

    "I couldn't swing the bat hard at all,'' Simon said. "But I faced him last year and I knew to look for a fastball there. I'm just glad we get to go home now -- and I'm glad we're going home after winning.''

    Salomon Torres (5-2) pitched four scoreless innings for the victory, the third successive Pirates game he got the decision. He won the second game of a doubleheader Wednesday night against Montreal and lost Thursday to the Expos.

    "I started to go to the manager and tell him I was tired, but I looked at the bullpen and we had only two guys left and I sucked it up for one more inning,'' Torres said. "I'm glad I did. It was a wild game. It was one of the most exciting games I've ever played in. You couldn't have scripted this better.''

    Pirates manager Lloyd McClendon was so tired, he hauled out a blanket so he could sleep in his office.

    "I'm too tired to go home,'' he said.

    The game was delayed by rain for 24 minutes before it started, then was played in a steady rain that was nearly a downpour at times before the umpires stopped play before the first pitch in the 10th.

    "You just had to blank it out as much as possible. They pretty much said we were going to play through it,'' Indians pitcher Brian Tallet said.

    It stopped raining about a half-hour into the second delay, but play didn't resume until 11:50 p.m. ET -- after a delay of 1 hour, 36 minutes -- because the grounds crew needed time to work on the field.

    "It was a marathon,'' Indians manager Eric Wedge said. "It came down to who was going to get the big hit to win it. To go that deep into the game with that much effort, you hate to end up on the short end.''

    The Pirates won their fifth in six games since dropping six in a row.

    With the Indians leading 3-0 in the third, Tallet's error for misplaying Jason Kendall's two-out grounder back to the mound led to a four-run inning.

    Brian Giles followed with a double to score Jeff Reboulet, who singled, and Aramis Ramirez hit Tallet's 2-1 pitch high off the foul pole to make it 4-3.

    "That error caused us to have to go 15 innings,'' Tallet said.

    It was Ramirez's sixth homer of the season and second in three days at PNC Park, both off the foul pole.

    Pirates starter Josh Fogg shook off a sluggish start to make the 4-3 lead stand up through seven innings. But the Indians tied it in the eighth against reliever Scott Sauerbeck when Milton Bradley walked, stole second and came home on Josh Bard's two-out single. Bradley reached base and stole second three times between the sixth and 10th innings.

    With the two teams a combined 23 games under .500, the crowd of 26,305 was far below PNC Park's capacity of 37,898, despite a large turnout of Cleveland fans.

    By extra innings, it resembled a high school game, with the few hundred Pirates fans remaining sitting behind their dugout cheering, and the few hundred Indians fans doing the same.

    Game notes


    The forecast called for only a chance of a shower. ... Pirates CF Kenny Lofton, the former Indians star, talked his way into playing after originally being left off McClendon's lineup card. He wound up playing the entire game. ... Indians P C.C. Sabathia singled as a pinch-hitter in the 11th. Jason Davis entered as a pinch-runner and when he moved up to second, Brian Anderson replaced him. ... The Indians used nearly half their roster -- 12 players -- just in the ninth spot in the batting order. All but two of the Indians' 25 players appeared. ... It was the longest game for both teams since 1998, when the Pirates played 16 innings against the Padres and the Indians went 17 against Seattle.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press

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