DENVER (AP) -Baseball fans trying to snap up Colorado Rockies World Series tickets overwhelmed computers set up for the online-only sale on Monday, forcing the club to temporarily suspend transactions.
``Right now we're shutting the system down,'' club spokesman Jay Alves announced outside Coors Field, drawing boos from fans. ``We expect to be online at some point.''
There was no immediate word on when that might happen.
After getting server-busy or error messages for over two hours on home, work and public library computers, about 100 fans gathered outside the stadium. They chanted ``We want tickets!'' when Alves came out to speak to reporters.
``We're as frustrated and disappointed as they are,'' Alves said.
Alves had said last week that the Rockies were prepared for any computer problems.
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.
``It was a very, very large response at this point, that's all I can tell you,'' Alves said about six hours after the site was shut down.
Officials were on conference calls into the evening, Alves said, while outside Coors Field excited fans lines up at the ticket office only to leave disappointed after security guards insisted no tickets would be sold at the ballpark.
The team said fewer than 500 tickets were sold Monday before the sale was shut down. Alves said those tickets will be honored.
The Series opens in Boston with games on Wednesday and Thursday. Games 3 and 4 will be on Saturday and Sunday in Denver. If there is a Game 5, it will be played Monday in Denver.
The Red Sox held a random online drawing for the right to buy tickets to Fenway Park games, said Ron Bumgarner, vice president of ticketing. The Oct. 15 drawing attracted more than 350,000 fans; the winners bought tickets at a private sale.
The team also had a telephone sale for fans without computer access, Bumgarner said.
``It's our goal to try to make it as smooth and fair and efficient as possible,'' he said.
A limited number of tickets will also go on sale at Fenway Park on game day, with fans allowed to line up five hours before game time.
Fenway Park tickets range from $50 to $225. Coors Field tickets are $65 to $250.
Officials with the Rockies and Major League Baseball did not immediately return calls.
Irvine, Calif.-based Paciolan Inc., which is running the computers for the Rockies' World Series ticket sales, said the crash affected the company's entire North American system.
Paciolan CEO Dave Butler said he did not yet know whether demand for Rockies tickets caused the crash.
``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.
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.
Associated Press Writers George Merritt in Denver and Nancy Rabinowitz in Boston contributed to this report.

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