Dodgers win Late, Late Late Show in 18 in­nings to cut Red Sox se­ries lead

The Bradenton Herald (Sunday) - - Sports - BY RON­ALD BLUM

Brian Dozier swung ba­nanas from a rope over the dugout rail­ing.

How ap­pro­pri­ate. The long­est game in World Se­ries his­tory was ba­nanas.

Twenty-three play­ers on each team, in­clud­ing nine pitch­ers.

Eigh­teen in­nings – four more than any of the pre­vi­ous 662 World Se­ries games.

Seven hours, 20 min­utes – 1:39 longer than any Se­ries game played be­fore and 15 min­utes more than all four games of the 1939 World Se­ries com­bined.

Walker Buehler threw the first pitch in au­tumn twi­light at 5:10 p.m. Pa­cific.

Max Muncy home­red on the 561st and last at 12:30 a.m., when most of Amer­ica was asleep and even fans in Alaska and in Hawaii were strug­gling to stay up.

Ernie Banks would have been happy – the Los An­ge­les Dodgers and Bos­ton Red Sox filled his oft-said de­sire: Let’s play two! “Take Me Out to the Ball Game” was played twice, dur­ing the sev­enth-in­ning stretch and the 14th in­ning elon­ga­tion.

“It was an amaz­ing game,” Dodgers out­fielder Yasiel Puig said. “I’m a lit­tle tired. But we’re ready to come back to­mor­row.”

Then he looked at his watch and cor­rected him- self.

“In a cou­ple of hours,” Puig said.

Live from Hol­ly­wood: the Late Late Late Show: The Dodgers’ dra­matic, drain­ing, dizzy­ing 3-2 vic­tory Fri­day night cut their World Se­ries deficit to 2-1.

“I think my beard got about 3 inches longer,” said Dodgers third base­man Justin Turner, whose red whiskers al­ready were Santa length.

Soc­cer ends af­ter 120 min­utes and is de­cided by penalty kicks.

Even Wim­ble­don is in­sti­tut­ing fifth-set tiebreak­ers next year when tied 12-12 af­ter John Is­ner’s 70-68 first-round tri­umph over Ni­co­las Mahut in

2010 and Is­ner’s 26-24 semi­fi­nal de­feat to Kevin An­der­son this year.

No U.S. ma­jor team sport DOU­BLED the length of a game in its cham­pi­onship. No­tably, a Bos­ton team has been in­volved in the long­est ti­tle match in all four of the ma­jor sports.

Only once has the Su­per Bowl gone to over­time, with only an ex­tra 11:02 needed for New Eng­land’s win over At­lanta in 2017 .

There have been only two NBA Fi­nals games need­ing the ex­tra 15 min­utes of three over­times, Bos­ton’s vic­tory over Phoenix in 1976 and the Suns’ win over Chicago in 1993. The long­est Stan­ley Cup fi­nal matchup was Ed­mon­ton’s win over Bos­ton in the 1990 opener, a three-over­time af­fair re­quir­ing an ex­tra 55:13.

“You look up and see the 18th in­ning, and you’re like, holy cow, where did the game go?” Muncy said. “Those last nine in­nings or so just kind of blended to­gether.”

The Dodgers munched on peanut but­ter and ba­nana sand­wiches pro­vided by a team em­ployee, and hung the ba­nanas to pro­duce fruit­ful luck – harken­ing back to the rally ba­nana cred­ited by En­rique Her­nan­dez for help­ing end a 35-in­ning score­less streak three years ago.

“You want to have fun with it,” said Rich Hill, the Dodgers sched­uled Game 4 starter be­fore a mid­dleof-the-night change to TBA to match Bos­ton’s prob­a­ble pitcher.

Clay­ton Ker­shaw, a three-time NL Cy Young Award win­ner with a .163 ca­reer bat­ting av­er­age, pinch hit in the 17th in­ning and lined out.

“Start­ing pitch­ers are used to get­ting their spikes on, but noth­ing usu­ally comes to fruition,” Ker­shaw said.

Muncy nearly won the game in the 15th in­ning, pulling a long drive off Nathan Eo­valdi that hooked just to the foul side of the right-field pole.

Eo­valdi, Bos­ton’s sched­uled Game 4 starter, was start­ing his sev­enth in­ning of re­lief when Muncy hit an op­po­site-field drive to left-cen­ter for the Dodgers’ fourth World Se­ries walkoff hit. He joined Cookie Lav­agetto, whose dou­ble in 1947’s fourth game ended a no-hit bid by the Yan­kees’ Bill Bevens; Jackie Robin­son, whose 10thin­ning sin­gle in 1956’s sixth game scored Jim Gil­liam; and Kirk Gib­son, whose two-out, two-run pinch homer off Oak­land’s Den­nis Eck­er­s­ley won the 1988 opener .

“All I know is we’re feel­ing pretty good about our­selves right now,” Los An­ge­les man­ager Dave Roberts said.

Rookie right-han­der Walker Buehler al­lowed two hits over seven shutout in­nings and left with a one-run lead pro­vided by Joc Ped­er­son’s third-in­ning homer off Rick Por­cello.

Jackie Bradley Jr.’s eighth-in­ning homer against Ken­ley Jansen tied the score, Dodgers cen­ter fielder Cody Bellinger threw out Ian Kinsler at the plate in the 10th to keep the game go­ing, the Red Sox went ahead on pitcher Scott Alexan­der’s throw­ing er­ror in the 13th and the Dodgers tied it 2-2 on Kinsler’s two-out throw­ing er­ror from sec­ond base in the bot­tom half .

Af­ter hit­ting .297 in win­ning the first two games at cozy, chilly Fen­way Park, Bos­ton was 7 for 57 at the plate in the warmth of Dodger Sta­dium– in­clud­ing 0 for 28 in the top four slots of the bat­ting or­der.

“This was a gut-wrench­ing game for both sides,” Muncy said.

MARK J. TER­RILL AP

Max Muncy cel­e­brates his walk-off home run against Bos­ton in the 18th in­ning of Game 3 of the World Se­ries, fi­nally end­ing the game early Satur­day in Los An­ge­les.

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