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Giants are kings of extra innings

@goodforball
April 13, 2019

SAN FRANCISCO -- Certainly, the Giants' 3-2, 18-inning triumph Friday night over the Colorado Rockies was unusual. But it shouldn't have been unexpected. The Giants have played 41 extra-inning games, the most in the Major Leagues, since the beginning of the 2017 season. They own a respectable 24-17 record in

SAN FRANCISCO -- Certainly, the Giants' 3-2, 18-inning triumph Friday night over the Colorado Rockies was unusual. But it shouldn't have been unexpected.

The Giants have played 41 extra-inning games, the most in the Major Leagues, since the beginning of the 2017 season. They own a respectable 24-17 record in those encounters.

Last year, the Giants won their four longest games based on innings played. They topped Miami in 16 innings, 6-3, on June 14, edged the Dodgers in 14 innings, 7-5, on April 7 and captured 13-inning contests against the Cubs (5-4 on July 11) and Mets (2-1 on Aug. 20). In 2017, San Francisco triumphed in its three longest games: a 17-inning, 3-2 decision over the Reds on May 12, a 14-inning, 4-3 conquest of the Rockies on June 27 and a 3-1 verdict in 13 innings at St. Louis on May 20.

It's easy to theorize that success in these instances breeds more success.

"We have kind of persevered and gotten through these long games," Giants shortstop Brandon Crawford said. "You just kind of draw on that experience."

Indeed, Giants center fielder Steven Duggar, whose big league career consists of 56 games, noted that veteran performers generated the winning run.

"It came from the guys in this clubhouse that have been here and done that," he said.

In terms of sheer numbers, the Giants and Rockies played the equivalent of a doubleheader. But the stress level exceeded the tension of any twin bill, Crawford said: "With a doubleheader, I feel like going into the day, you kind of know it's going to be a long day. [With extra innings] you almost lose track of the innings after a while."

Belt scratched: Brandon Belt reported to Oracle Park with a stiff neck, forcing the Giants to scratch the first baseman from Saturday's lineup. Pablo Sandoval replaced Belt.

Chris Haft has covered the Major Leagues since 1991 and has worked for MLB.com since 2007. Follow him on Twitter at @goodforball.