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Daily Buzz: Tuesday, July 9
The New York Mets defeated the San Francisco Giants 4-3 in 16 innings Monday night/Tuesday morning at AT&T Park — a 5-hour, 26-minute test of endurance that ended at about 3:45 a.m. ET. The marathon marked the second Mets game in five days to reach at least 15 innings, and the team’s fourth such game so far this season.
"I've never heard of anything like this. It's unbelievable," Mets skipper Terry Collins told The Associated Press of his team’s predilection for playing deep into the night. "At least we're used to it."
Collins makes a fair point. After all, 15-inning games aren’t exactly common. There have been 10 games of at least 15 innings in baseball this year, and the Mets’ involvement in four of them doubles the total of the next-closest team (Arizona, Miami, Oakland and Toronto have each played in two).
Only 28 times since 1916 has a team played in four or more games in one season that went to at least 15 innings, according to Baseball-Reference.com. The most recent team to do it prior to this season was the 2004 Minnesota Twins, and before that, you’d have to go back to the 1989 LA Dodgers to find another team to accomplish such a feat.
In fact, the Mets are only the ninth team and fifth franchise to play in this many 15-inning games in a season since the last time the Mets did it, in 1968 — when they went 1-3 in such games, including a 1-0, 24-inning loss to Houston in the fifth game of the season. (Tom Seaver pitched 10 scoreless innings for New York that night, but the game finally ended in the Astros’ favor when a bases-loaded grounder from Bob Aspromonte off of Les Rohr went through the legs of shortstop Al Weis — who I wouldn't blame for just wanting to go home.)
All time, the Mets have played in 50 regular-season games and two postseason games that reached the 15th inning, with a mark of 25-27 in those games (including 2-0 in the playoffs), which doesn’t make their 1-3 mark this year, or in 1968, sound quite so bad.
Other notable Mets marathons include a 25-inning loss to the Cardinals in September 1974, a tie for the second-longest game in baseball history. And on five occasions, the Mets played one of these marathon games as part of a doubleheader — essentially turning three of them into tripleheaders by playing 18 or more innings in one of the games.
In May 1964, the Giants topped the Mets 8-6 in 23 innings in Game 2 of a doubleheader. The nightcap alone took 7 hours, 23 minutes to play, and the 9-hour 52-minute doubleheader still stands as the longest in baseball history. If that nightcap wasn't memorable enough, the Mets actually turned a triple play in the 14th inning as Roy McMillan grabbed a line drive hit by Orlando Cepeda, stepped on second and threw to Ed Kranepool at first.
In 1972, the Mets beat the Phillies 3-2 in 18 innings in the first half of a twinbill (thankfully, the second game took just 1 hour, 45 minutes to complete), and then there was the 18-inning 0-0 tie in Game 2 of a 1965 double feature. That game began with starting pitchers Rob Gardner and Chris Short each throwing 15 scoreless innings before being called due to curfew.
The all-time record for 15-inning games in a season is five, set by the Washington Senators in 1918 and 1967, the St. Louis Cardinals in 1928, and the Chicago Cubs, who went 0-5 in games 15 innings or longer in 1980.
The Mets have 76 games left this season, and if the first half of the season is any indication, they may be setting the new standard for on-field longevity by season’s end.
Now, for some links:
• Davey Johnson remembers a former teammate who, legend has it, had a 110-mph fastball.
• OK, Mason Plumlee, we see you:
• Remember the name Stefan Kozlov, tennis fans.
• The weirdest summer games? Try the wife-carrying championships in Helsinki, Finland.
• This photo of Larry Brown from 1975 has gone viral, for obvious reasons:
• Kareem Abdul-Jabbar joined Shaq in ripping Dwight Howard for leaving.
• Read the inspiring story of the Syracuse Chiefs announcer who won't be slowed down by cerebral palsy.
• Here is Drew Rosenhaus wrestling a six-foot shark (with some NSFW language in the background):
• New York will follow New Jersey and discuss the issue of trash talking on the field.
• Frank Deford to receive National Humanities Medal from President Obama.
• Yo, Nick Swisher, gotta run that one out:
• There's more bad news for Maryland running back Wes Brown.
• Patrick Ewing Jr. won't have it easy playing under his dad on the Bobcats summer league team.
• Video evidence of Rex Ryan running with the bulls in Pamplona:
• Rick Pitino will sign 400 more bottles of signature bourbon.
• The University of Oregon is looking to make more money, it seems.
• The Yankees grounds crew had some trouble with the tarp Monday night:
• Bettors seem to believe in the Bucs’ chances in the second half of the baseball season.
• It's unclear if one of those bettors is this nun with a gambling problem, who got 90 days in jail for stealing from two churches.
• Here, via Guyism, is a dancing hot dog:
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