Listen to SABR ‘broadcast’ of the greatest baseball game of the 19th century: Red Stockings vs. Atlantics, 1870

On June 14, 1870, the Cincinnati Red Stockings’ historic 81-game winning streak ended in a thrilling 11-inning contest against the Atlantic club of Brooklyn — considered by many to be the greatest baseball game of the 19th century.

The Red Stockings were the first and most famous all-professional baseball club in America, completing an undefeated season in 1869 and continuing their winning streak into 1870. Their unprecedented success sparked national interest in the fortunes of the club, which was led by brothers Harry and George Wright, veteran pitcher Asa Brainard, first baseman Charles Gould; and 20-year-old Cal McVey.

SABR members John Thorn, Bill Ryczek, and Joanne Hulbert take you back in time to June 14, 1870, at the Capitoline Grounds in Brooklyn with a special re-created play-by-play broadcast of “the finest game ever played.”

Red Stockings president Aaron Champion said afterward, “Our boys did nobly, but fortune was against us. Eleven innings played. Though beaten, not disgraced.”

This broadcast excerpt was recorded in January 2018 and debuted later that spring during SABR’s Frederick Ivor-Campbell 19th Century Base Ball Conference at the National Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, New York.

To read more stories from SABR’s Inventing Baseball: The Greatest Games of the 19th Century, click here.


Originally published: April 22, 2019. Last Updated: April 22, 2019.