World Series Ticket Sales Suspended After 'Malicious Attack' Crashes Computers

Colorado Rockies officials said Monday their computer system for online-only World Series ticket sales was the target of an "external malicious attack," but online ticket sales to resume at noon Tuesday.

Jay Alves couldn't immediately provide details of the attack. He said nearly 18,000 tickets were available for each game in Denver — Games 3, 4, and 5, if necessary — on Saturday, Sunday and Monday.

When asked if the team was prepared for another repeat Alves said: "We absolutely have backup plans in place," without elaborating. He referred questions about the attack to Irvine, Calif.-based Paciolan Inc., which runs the computers for the Rockies' World Series ticket sales.

Paciolan representatives did not immediately return phone messages.

"Throughout the day we've evaluated all of our options, and we continue to believe that the only sales approach is the most fair and equitable method to distribute the tickets," Keli McGregor, Rockies' team president said in a statement.

On Monday, there were 8.5 million attempts to connect with the computers in the first 90 minutes after sales started, he said, and only several hundred tickets had been sold before the system had to be shut down.

The Rockies put as many as 60,000 tickets up for sale online only, and team officials said their computers were ready to handle the expected crush. But two hours after tickets went on sale, many fans reported they could not get access to the ticket-sales Web site.

Officials with Major League Baseball did not immediately return calls.

Paciolan CEO Dave Butler earlier in the day said the crash affected the company's entire North American system.

"This is not the Rockies' fault in anyway whatsoever," Butler said. "We are working hard to address it."

About 20 people lined up in near-freezing temperatures outside the Denver Public Library before it opened in hopes of using public-access computers to score tickets.

"If you can't get tickets here, you're going to have to pay $200, $300 above face value," said Clayton McLeod, a 26-year-old heavy-machine operator who took the day off to try to get seats.

McLeod said he has Internet access from his apartment building but thought the library's computers might be faster. His mother, father, uncle and girlfriend were trying to buy tickets from other computers, he said.

His boss, also a Rockies fan, agreed to give him the day off and asked McLeod to get tickets for him, too.

"We'll see how many I'll get," McLeod said.

The Rockies limited sales to four per person per game.

The Series opens in Boston with games on Wednesday and Thursday. Besides Games 3 and 4, Game 5 will be in Denver if necessary.

Coors Field seats more than 50,000, but about 30,000 spots per game are allotted to season-ticket holders, the two teams and Major League Baseball.

Season-ticket holders got a chance to buy their tickets last weekend. Prices range from $65 to $250.

Tickets originally were to be sold at Coors Field and Rockies' Dugout Stores in the Denver area, as well as online. The team announced Wednesday all sales would be online, saying that would be more fair.