Tie games used to be an accepted part of baseball. Not counting in the standings, they'd simply be replayed in their entirety, or, from 1969 through 1987 at Wrigley Field, be suspended.
Over time, games began to be played in worse and worse conditions -- you surely remember a few of these at Wrigley from recent years -- but occasionally, before rules were changed to prevent tie games, there were a few that went into the books as a tie.
This day produced one of those, a five-inning, 2-2 Cubs tie with the Montreal Expos in which neither team scored until the fifth inning. Bill Jauss summed it up in the Tribune:
It wasn't the winning run that Rick Wilkins scored with two outs in the final inning Friday. But it was the run that enabled the Cubs to avoid a loss. So catcher Wilkins and his fellow Cubs had reason to feel upbeat after their come-from-behind, rain-shortened, 2-2 five-inning tie against the speedy young greyhounds who zip around the bases for the Montreal Expos. Wilkins was in the thick of the action in a game that was twice delayed by rain, for 37 minutes in the third inning and for 1 hour 14 minutes before umpires called it after each team scored its only runs in the fifth. It was ruled an official game, meaning statistics count. It will be replayed as part of a double-header Aug. 17 at Wrigley Field.
I remember attending this game. The weather was pretty bad even at the time the game started -- foggy, cool for late May (51 degrees at game time), and, as noted, there was a delay during the first five innings as well as the one that had the umpires finally call it. The Cubs wound up splitting the makeup doubleheader in August.
A game like this played now -- no matter where -- would be suspended and completed before the next scheduled game between the teams, which is the way they should have been doing it all along. In fact, they should do this for games of fewer than five innings. Say two teams get through four innings, but then weather prevents them from going farther. Why should they have to start over, with none of the stats counting? It's something I think MLB should consider.
The Cubs have had 160 tie games in their 138-season history. This game will stand forever as the last such game.