Extra effort: Six Tuesday games go past nine innings
There have been only two days with more extra-inning contests in MLB history
NEW YORK -- Baseball had a day for the ages on Tuesday, a schedule full of extra drama and extra suspense largely unparalleled. There were six extra-inning games played on Tuesday, and according to the Elias Sports Bureau, there have been only two days with more extra-inning games in baseball history.
The only two other days -- July 4, 1918 and Aug. 15, 1998 -- both had seven extra-inning games. According to Elias, Tuesday night's action represented just the seventh time in baseball history -- and the first time since June 6, 2010 -- that there were six extra-inning games in the same day.
Two of Tuesday's six extra-inning games were pushed the extra mile by a run scoring in the bottom of the ninth inning, and the home and road teams both won three times. The day's longest game went 14 innings, and the Cardinals earned a 4-3 win at home over the Pirates in that one.
St. Louis scored twice in the sixth inning but trailed by a 3-2 score in the bottom of the ninth, and Allen Craig delivered an RBI single with two outs to tie the game. The game was knotted all the way until the 14th, when reserve outfielder Adron Chambers singled home the winning run.
Five of the six extra-inning games were won on singles, but Arizona took the prize for the most dramatic finish. First baseman Paul Goldschmidt led off the bottom of the ninth with a home run against Baltimore, and he homered again in the 11th to give the D-backs a 4-3 victory.
Marlins vs. Royals featured the best pitching duel of the extra-inning games. Starters Jose Fernandez and Bruce Chen both threw seven innings of three-hit shutout ball, and nobody scored until rookie Christian Yelich gave Miami a 1-0 lead with a single in the top of the 10th.
Two of the day's extra-inning games -- Tigers vs. White Sox and Red Sox vs. Blue Jays -- featured a first-place team playing against the team at the bottom of its division.
The White Sox led for most of the game on Tuesday, thanks to a three-run rally in the fourth inning. But Detroit came back on a clutch single by Brayan Pena in the top of the eighth to force extra innings. Chicago finally secured a 4-3 win in the bottom of the 11th on a two-out hit by Alejandro De Aza.
The Red Sox took a late lead in the top of the seventh on Tuesday, and they watched as the Blue Jays managed to tie things up in the bottom of the eighth on a homer by J.P. Arencibia. Shane Victorino notched a two-run single in the 11th, and Boston held on for a 4-2 victory.
The Reds took an early lead in the first inning over the Cubs on Tuesday, and after Chicago tied the game in the second, Cincinnati scored twice more in the third inning to retake command. The Cubs tied it in the seventh on a home run, and Shin-Soo Choo gave the Reds a 6-4 win with a single in the 11th inning.
The first day with seven extra-inning games, July 4, 1918, came in a Major League season that had just 16 teams. But there were eight doubleheaders that day, and all but one of the double dips had at least one game that went extra innings. That day featured two 12-inning games, one of which included Hall of Famers Ty Cobb, Eddie Collins, Ray Schalk and Harry Heilmann. Chicago beat Detroit, 7-6, in that game.
Spencer Fordin is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.