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Thursday, February 05, 2015

Al Michaels: Twins used fake crowd noise during ‘87 Series - TwinCities.com

His proof?

“I’m going, wait a minute. This is a baseball game,” Michaels told the host, NBC colleague Mike Florio. “Nobody is screaming like this when the fifth inning starts. ... To me, there was no question” that the crowd noise was not natural.

Jim Furtado Posted: February 05, 2015 at 09:13 AM | 39 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: twins

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   1. Hal Chase School of Professionalism Posted: February 05, 2015 at 09:27 AM (#4893637)
Well, to add my own anecdotal evidence: I attended a University of Minnesota football game in the Dome back in '08. The crowd about half-filled the place, so there was little chance of a huge noise factor. Late in the game when it got tense, I heard what I swore was crowd noise coming from the huge speakers above the field (I was in the nosebleeds way up high since I was in the visitors allotment). Now, it could have been the crowd noise from below bouncing off the roof, I suppose. But I immediately thought that they had mic'd the crowd they did have and were feeding that noise back through the speakers.

Don't know for sure. That always stuck with me. I left that night saying, "I can see how this place would be off the hook for a Vikings game."

Al might not be remembering the way those Twins fans made noise just for noise's sake. It was perhaps the least "baseball-ish" cheering I've ever seen. I remember the Twins players' wives blowing whistles when they played in Detroit in the ALCS in '87. I don't know if the crowd noise in the dome was piped in, but they were certainly getting off on just making the loudest noise possible.
   2. Der-K's tired of these fruits from poisoned trees Posted: February 05, 2015 at 09:32 AM (#4893640)
I feel as if I remember reading at the time that they were doing this.
   3. Der-K's tired of these fruits from poisoned trees Posted: February 05, 2015 at 09:32 AM (#4893641)
I feel as if I remember writing post two at the time that I was posting this. (edited double post)
   4. OCD SS Posted: February 05, 2015 at 09:43 AM (#4893646)
I'm not so sure. I was in the nosebleed seats for game 7 and everyone around me was constantly screaming. The other thing was that the Metrodome had some funky acoustics, and it seemed like the sound was bouncing around off the inside of the roof, which could easily seem like something coming from a speaker.

Whether the noise was real or not I'm pretty sure I have some hearing damage to show for it.
   5. Traderdave Posted: February 05, 2015 at 09:50 AM (#4893648)
Small sample size, but the one game I attended at the Metrodome was an unremarkable night vs DET with attendance of 18,000 or so, and it was louder than hell. I mean rock concert level of loud.
   6. Itchy Row Posted: February 05, 2015 at 10:16 AM (#4893656)
The false start call against Tommy Herr was a turning point in Game 7.
   7. cardsfanboy Posted: February 05, 2015 at 10:28 AM (#4893668)
Just what Whine Herzog needs another person propping up his conspiracy theories and giving him more leeway to escape any type of culpability for his team play.
   8. DL from MN Posted: February 05, 2015 at 11:16 AM (#4893709)
I call BS. That noise is just the pent up emotions of 50,000 Scandinavians yearning to let it out.
   9. Jose Has Absurd Goosebump Arms Posted: February 05, 2015 at 11:37 AM (#4893725)
I feel as if I remember reading at the time that they were doing this.


I had the same reaction.
   10. kthejoker Posted: February 05, 2015 at 11:39 AM (#4893729)
Vaguely related: every Oilers game I went to in the Astrodome was louder than hell almost nonstop, but the Astros games just had this kind of constant echo-y murmur.
   11. Itchy Row Posted: February 05, 2015 at 11:48 AM (#4893744)
the Astros games just had this kind of constant echo-y murmur
Astro fans could be very passionate.
   12. bunyon Posted: February 05, 2015 at 11:52 AM (#4893750)
I think we're all agreed that simply contracting the Twins and wiping them from the record books would be a wonderful idea.
   13. bobm Posted: February 05, 2015 at 11:53 AM (#4893752)
This is why Twins fans are known as the "10th" "11th" (with DH) man.
   14. esseff Posted: February 05, 2015 at 12:31 PM (#4893788)
#2/#9: Was it that, or the rumor that they were turning on and off air blowers every half-inning?

And, as #6 obliquely suggests, fake noise, like the Falcons', is a bigger issue in NFL games, where the advantage isn't just psychological.

Finally, gotta love the reporter's attempt at the end of his article to impeach Michaels' opinion
   15. Astroenteritis Posted: February 05, 2015 at 12:38 PM (#4893799)
Vaguely related: every Oilers game I went to in the Astrodome was louder than hell almost nonstop, but the Astros games just had this kind of constant echo-y murmur.


Yes, Oiler games were very loud, but you get about 8 or 9 thousand fans at a baseball game in the Dome and it sounded like the background noise in one of those restaurant movie scenes.

I attended a few regular season games in the Metrodome, and I don't remember it being remarkably loud. Maybe it was an off day for the crowd.
   16. DL from MN Posted: February 05, 2015 at 12:47 PM (#4893807)
I remember the 9th inning of a playoff game at the Dome and it was so loud I couldn't hear myself yelling.
   17. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: February 05, 2015 at 01:05 PM (#4893818)
Well, to add my own anecdotal evidence: I attended a University of Minnesota football game in the Dome back in '08. The crowd about half-filled the place, so there was little chance of a huge noise factor. Late in the game when it got tense, I heard what I swore was crowd noise coming from the huge speakers above the field (I was in the nosebleeds way up high since I was in the visitors allotment). Now, it could have been the crowd noise from below bouncing off the roof, I suppose. But I immediately thought that they had mic'd the crowd they did have and were feeding that noise back through the speakers.

Given how that you can't hear yourself think at about 80% of the restaurants that have sprung up in the past 10 years, when the noise is coming only from speaking voices bounced off bad acoustics, I have no problem thinking that the same phenomenon explains the deafening noise in the Metrodome.
   18. Der-K's tired of these fruits from poisoned trees Posted: February 05, 2015 at 01:09 PM (#4893820)
#2/#9: Was it that, or the rumor that they were turning on and off air blowers every half-inning?
Both!
Does anyone have Bill James' take on the blowers story handy?

I am not remotely doubting, for what it's worth, that the Metrodome was a loud building, whether by architecture or fan veracity.
   19. It's regretful that PASTE was able to get out Posted: February 05, 2015 at 01:13 PM (#4893826)
They must have pumped fake crowd noise into PNC for the 2013 play-in game too, because I couldn't hear myself scream there either.
   20. Rally Posted: February 05, 2015 at 01:15 PM (#4893828)
Just what Whine Herzog needs another person propping up his conspiracy theories and giving him more leeway to escape any type of culpability for his team play.


There shouldn't be any culpability. The team did what 24 others that year could not do, get to the world series. And played in to 7 games. That's a great season.
   21. Moeball Posted: February 05, 2015 at 01:32 PM (#4893838)
I remember at the time that the noise was just one of the many things that apparently gave the Twins this Jekyll-and-Hyde reputation. That 1987 team was almost unbeatable at home - and horribly wretched on the road, thus having only an 85-77 record overall.

The WS was just a microcosm of their whole season - win all the games at home, lose all of them on the road.

And I loved the way Tom Brunansky knew how to play the "rolls" off the baggie in right field in the Metrodome, whereas the Cardinals outfielders weren't too sure where the ball was going to end up!
   22. Ned Garvin: Male Prostitute Posted: February 05, 2015 at 02:51 PM (#4893906)
Back in the old days, when the Seahawks played in the Kingdome, the noise was very loud. (Not so for the Mariners, going to M's games was like going to the library, up until 95 anyway.) That's when the 12th man thing got started. The Kingdome crowds were so loud that the NFL actually made a rule against crowd noise! Now, Seattle is a football town (all else equal), but I don't think that the Seahawks crowds were that much louder than other cities. But the Kingdome was a giant echo chamber, so everything got amplified.

I have no doubt the Metrodome was (is?) like that as well, at least to some extent. So while the Twins might have had a mic on the crowd to put more sound through the speakers, I don't think it is unreasonable to believe the crowds were actually that loud, when the dome is considered.
   23. cardsfanboy Posted: February 05, 2015 at 02:56 PM (#4893916)
#2/#9: Was it that, or the rumor that they were turning on and off air blowers every half-inning?


Absolutely the rumors were that they were doing this, Whiney Herzog talks about this in his book(from 20 years ago) and the piping in noise was always thought to be likely also.

But this is baseball, not football, and who cares. Simply speaking by the time you have made it to the majors, the noise shouldn't matter anymore(except on defense, since there are studies that indicate a good portion of judging a fly ball is based upon the ears, but considering there was no "Flood" like mistakes in the outfield in that series, it really doesn't matter.
   24. cardsfanboy Posted: February 05, 2015 at 03:00 PM (#4893920)
Back in the old days, when the Seahawks played in the Kingdome, the noise was very loud. (Not so for the Mariners, going to M's games was like going to the library, up until 95 anyway.) That's when the 12th man thing got started. The Kingdome crowds were so loud that the NFL actually made a rule against crowd noise! Now, Seattle is a football town (all else equal), but I don't think that the Seahawks crowds were that much louder than other cities. But the Kingdome was a giant echo chamber, so everything got amplified.

I have no doubt the Metrodome was (is?) like that as well, at least to some extent. So while the Twins might have had a mic on the crowd to put more sound through the speakers, I don't think it is unreasonable to believe the crowds were actually that loud, when the dome is considered.


The Rams were considered to be the loudest stadium during the two years they were actually decent, but there were charges of piping in noise then even.
   25. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: February 05, 2015 at 03:15 PM (#4893932)
The Rams were considered to be the loudest stadium during the two years they were actually decent, but there were charges of piping in noise then even.

Wwll, they sure as hell needed that noise when they were in Los Angeles.
   26. It's regretful that PASTE was able to get out Posted: February 05, 2015 at 03:18 PM (#4893939)
I hope they're taking the generators with them now that they're moving back to Los Angeles, then.
   27. cardsfanboy Posted: February 05, 2015 at 03:40 PM (#4893961)
Wwll, they sure as hell needed that noise when they were in Los Angeles.


I'm talking the two years they were decent in St Louis.
   28. Squash Posted: February 05, 2015 at 03:44 PM (#4893963)
I remember these stories as well, and wasn't there something about the Skydome as well? Might be totally misremembering on that one.
   29. Itchy Row Posted: February 05, 2015 at 03:46 PM (#4893964)
Wwll, they sure as hell needed that noise when they were in Los Angeles.
Anaheim was terrible for both football and baseball at the time. I don't remember the Rams' time actually in LA, but the Coliseum could get loud with 40,000 Raider fans or 90,000 USC fans. And in that Columbo when Robert Culp murdered Dean Stockwell.
   30. Rob_Wood Posted: February 05, 2015 at 04:52 PM (#4894015)
ha ha good one
   31. TerpNats Posted: February 05, 2015 at 09:47 PM (#4894110)
Ever listen to an NBA game? There's no way you'll convince me that league doesn't use piped-in noise.
   32. Captain Joe Bivens, Elderly Northeastern Jew Posted: February 05, 2015 at 09:53 PM (#4894112)
I went to a few Celtics games during the Antoine Walker/Paul Pierce years, when you could get decent seats for 10 bucks, and I thought they were adding artificial noise. They'd ask the crowd to "GET LOUD!!" on the whatever you call it, and they'd have this fake meter that went from "ok" to "OLD GARDEN LEVELS!!!", and it was obviously BS because the C's of that era weren't anything to get excited about.

   33. Infinite Yost (Voxter) Posted: February 05, 2015 at 10:39 PM (#4894131)
Not so for the Mariners, going to M's games was like going to the library, up until 95 anyway.


I remember this change really vividly, because we used to truck up to Seattle to see a couple of ballgames every year when I was a kid. We went to a game in August or September of 95 and suddenly it was like a different place. It sounded like an airport runway.

Autzen in Eugene is usually considered the loudest or second-loudest college football stadium in the country, and visiting journalists routinely accuse the Ducks of piping in noise. They don't do it; something about the structure of the stadium since they added seats and closed off the end that used to be open creates an enormous, rumbling echo that makes the whole place shake. I wear earplugs when I go to Ducks games anymore.

Anyhoozy, what I mean is that architecture can have massive, eerie effects on ambient sound, which I have personally witnessed. I would be pretty surprised if the Twins were pumping in noise for those games. Never ascribe to malice what can be accounted for by incompetence. (Or, well -- environment, I guess.)
   34. cardsfanboy Posted: February 05, 2015 at 10:44 PM (#4894136)
Anyhoozy, what I mean is that architecture can have massive, eerie effects on ambient sound, which I have personally witnessed. I would be pretty surprised if the Twins were pumping in noise for those games. Never ascribe to malice what can be accounted for by incompetence. (Or, well -- environment, I guess.)



The twins were alternating the air conditioner based upon which team was up to bat, I have no problems of accusing them of malice. It didn't make a difference in the series though.
   35. Infinite Yost (Voxter) Posted: February 05, 2015 at 10:55 PM (#4894138)
The twins were alternating the air conditioner based upon which team was up to bat


I've heard that 9/11 was an inside job, also.
   36. Sweatpants Posted: February 05, 2015 at 11:38 PM (#4894153)
   37. cardsfanboy Posted: February 05, 2015 at 11:52 PM (#4894159)
I've heard that 9/11 was an inside job, also.


I'm as anti-conspiracy nutter as anyone. (JFK was killed by a lone assassin, GMO's aren't a danger, there is no Big Foot, Nessie or other crap, the Moon Landing happened, Global Warming is real, Vaccines do not cause Autism, etc.) but when a situation, that everyone at the time knew was happening, that has been confirmed by the guy doing it(as post 36 points out) it doesn't really take a leap of faith to think it was happening.

The problem, is that that it probably made absolutely no difference on one ball ever hit in a game, just because it didn't matter, doesn't mean it didn't happen.
   38. Itchy Row Posted: February 06, 2015 at 12:44 AM (#4894174)
Hrbek did 9/11.
   39. Howie Menckel Posted: February 06, 2015 at 12:54 AM (#4894177)

"I remember the 9th inning of a playoff game at the Dome and it was so loud I couldn't hear myself yelling."

I was in the loge section behind home plate at Game 7 of the 1986 World Series, and the "CAL-VIN" chants for Schiraldi mid-game as the Mets trailed 3-0 were as deafening as a domed stadium even though it was Shea. But it was NY and everyone around was screaming, so no fake noise needed. I struggled to focus on the pitch amid the din. Pitch? faghaddeboutit

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