Alexander: The Longest Night was wild, weird and, if you’re a Dodgers fan, wonderful

first_img Alexander: Baseball’s ‘unwritten rules’ need to be erased And there is one other observation from The Longest Night, which set World Series records for innings and time of game: The announced crowd at the beginning of the night was 53,114. By 12:30 Saturday morning, when it finally ended, a good 40,000 or more were still in the ballpark, yelling and screaming.“The fans were unbelievable,” Muncy said. “L.A. kind of has a reputation of fans showing up late, leaving early, but that wasn’t the case tonight. They were there early and they were there for the whole game, and they were loud for the entire game. Every time we got into a big moment on defense, they got loud and we got the out. The stadium was rocking. Same thing on offense; any time we got something going, they were loud. They were unbelievable tonight.”Yep, even the schoolkids on the West Coast got to enjoy this one. LOS ANGELES — Ours is, at the very least, the most convenient time zone on this continent. We can watch football from 9 or 10 in the morning, throughout the day and well into the night (of which the Pac-12 takes full advantage). And baseball postseason games normally end before the kids have to go to bed.But it’s good that Friday wasn’t a school night. The youngsters, as well as the rest of us, were able to sit in on history.Whole World Series have been played in about as much time as the record 7 hours, 20 minutes required to finish Game 3, an 18-inning, 3-2 Dodger victory that Max Muncy ended with an opposite-field home run on Boston reliever Nathan Eovaldi’s 97th pitch of the night.For instance, the 1939 series, a sweep by the Yankees over the Cubs, was achieved in 7 hours and 53 minutes, total, over the four games. (Day games, no commercial breaks, pitchers working quickly and hitters staying in the box, etc.) More recently and closer to home, when the Orioles swept the Dodgers in 1966, Games 3 and 4 in Baltimore – both 1-0 Orioles victories – were dashed off in 3:40, total. At that point Friday night, the lads had just entered extra innings.Whole World Series have been played without anywhere near the craziness that marked Game 3, too.The first nine innings were relatively routine. Joc Pederson gave the Dodgers a 1-0 lead on a solo home run in the third. Kenley Jansen, asked to get the last six outs, instead wasted Walker Buehler’s sensational seven innings by serving up a tying home run to Jackie Bradley Jr. in the eighth.Boston took the lead in the 13th when Brock Holt scored from second on Eduardo Núñez’ infield single: effectively, a nubber to the left of the mound on which Scott Alexander fielded the ball but was charged with a throwing error because Muncy, the first baseman at the time, had also moved to field the ball and was out of the play, and second baseman Kiké Hernandez couldn’t get to the bag in time.Núñez giveth, and Núñez taketh away. After catching Cody Bellinger’s popup for the second out of the inning with Muncy on first, Nunez tumbled into the field boxes. (The prevailing wisdom is that he fell in, but in reality he vaulted in, almost like a high jumper.) That allowed Muncy to tag up and take second, and he scored the tying run on Yasiel Puig’s grounder to second when Ian Kinsler rushed his throw and tossed it in the direction of the photo well. Alexander: Lakers-Blazers is not your typical No. 1 vs. No. 8 series Alexander: Lakers fans, it’s been a long wait center_img Alexander: Coping with the desolation, and silence, of empty seats Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error Speaking of giving and taking away, Bellinger had his moments, too. He handed the Red Sox an out when he was picked off after a leadoff single in the ninth. He snatched it back in the 10th, launching a laser from center field to nail Kinsler trying to score on Rafael Devers’ fly ball and end the inning.This was a game with plenty of twists and turns, and also a lot of standing. Consider that the umpiring crew of Ted Barrett, Chad Fairchild, Jeff Nelson, Jim Reynolds, Fieldin Culbreth and Kerwin Danley stayed on their feet, and on alert, the entire 7 hours and 20 minutes. They drew kudos in a statement from an MLB spokesman for their professionalism and accuracy; there were only two video reviews all night, and both calls were upheld.Sign up for our Inside the Dodgers newsletter. Be the best Dodger fan you can be by getting daily intel on your favorite team. Subscribe here.Alex Cora spent the night on his feet too, and the reviews weren’t so good. Cora was criticized for removing starter Rick Porcello in the fifth rather than have him face Pederson a third time. It worked out; Eduardo Rodriguez struck out Pederson. But it also started the parade from the bullpen that culminated in Eovaldi, who had been penciled in as the Game 4 starter, pitching six-plus innings of relief.He was also rapped for removing J.D. Martinez for pinch-runner Kinsler in the 10th. You could make the case the Red Sox could have used Kinsler’s bat … but then the top four spots in the Sox lineup (Mookie Betts, Xavier Bogaerts, Mitch Moreland/Eovaldi — thanks to a double-switch in the 12th — and Martinez/Kinsler) were a combined 0 for 28 with 12 strikeouts.Neither team was ablaze offensively; Boston was 1 for 7 with runners in scoring position, the Dodgers 1 for 4.But consider Muncy’s night: In the first nine innings he was 0 for 3 with a walk. In the second nine, he was 2 for 3 with a walk and two runs scored, and the strikeout (in the 15th) came after he just missed wrapping one around the right-field foul pole; it barely hooked foul.He should have waved it fair. It worked for Carlton Fisk, after all.Related Articles Alexander: Playoff series takes a turn Clippers weren’t expecting last_img

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