Celebrating the weirdest and wildest moments in Sunday's 18-inning Pirates-Nationals game
When two teams square off to play the equivalent of two ballgames on one day, wacky things are sure to take part. After all, it's like a party -- the first three hours are filled with polite conversation and responsible chip consumption. But if it goes for another three hours? Chip crumbs are all over the floor and lamps are used as props in action-packed tableaus.
Such as it was in the Pirates' 2-1 victory over the Nationals in 18 innings on Sunday -- the longest regular-season game in Nationals history (there was that 18-inning posteason game ...) Here were our favorite weird moments.
Daniel Murphy goes deep
With two outs in the bottom of the ninth, Murphy was told "Hey man, I know it's your day off and all, but you mind coming to work for a minute? Got a special project for you." Murphy, being a good company man, stepped up to the plate and, as he's done so many times since last postseason, went deep to tie the game at 1.
It was his first pinch-hit home run since he went deep against the Nats on April 27, 2011. Damn, Daniel.
A young Pirates fan experiences every emotion possible
If life is for experiencing the richest and deepest of every emotions, then this Pirates fan had a full life in 18 innings. Joy filled his soul when the Pirates were winning:
Despair consumed him when Murphy went deep:
And when the Pirates pulled out the win, his body wanted to flee from Earth's gravity, so his guardian had to hold him tightly. At least, that's what I saw.
Two President's Races
If you get one President's Race in a nine-inning game, it stands to reason that you'd get two in an 18-inning affair, right?
Thomas Jefferson was clotheslined in the first race (a sentence I never thought I'd be lucky enough to write):
So naturally a second one had to be held in the 13th inning:
Out of the Eric Fryer and into the fire
As a catcher, Fryer is probably not the fastest guy on the Pirates. But when Josh Harrison blasted a double to the center-field fence in the top of the 16th, the Pirates saw their chance to score the go-ahead run. Unfortunately for Fryer (who did reach a top speed of 19.4 mph according to Statcast™), Michael Taylor made an amazing play on the ball off the wall. He then made a great throw to Danny Espinosa, who, in turn, made a 94.8-mph toss to the plate to catch Fryer at the plate.
Pitchers fielding practice
Pitchers have to practice playing in the infield. Perhaps they need to add in an obstacle course, though -- you know, like the ones you see gold retrievers going through. When Fryer popped up a bunt in the top of the 17th, Perez had to race off the mound to make the grab before having to then best the Aggrocrag-in-the-form-of-Clint Robinson to try and double the runner up.
Sadly for Perez, he failed.
Trea Turner was beTrea'd by Starling Marte
Marte is very good at the chill outfield assist thing. He showed off that skill last year against the Marlins with this nonchalant toss from the outfield corner:
When Turner tried to turn his single into a double in the bottom of the 17th, hoping that his hustle would make the difference between victory and continued-playing-of-baseball, Marte did it again.
Only one reaction could possibly sum up just how chill Marte is:
Given that Marte then won the game in the top of the 18th with a solo home run, this GIF is most fitting.