The Dodgers and Colorado Rockies on Tuesday night — and Wednesday morning — may have set records that will never be broken.
The teams combined to use 58 players, including 24 pitchers, during a 5-4 Colorado win in 16 innings. Never before had a major league game included more than 54 players or 21 pitchers.
Such records are possible because team rosters expand from 25 players in the first five months of the season to a maximum of 40 for the final month.
However, with an increasing chorus of managers and general managers upset over the perceived unfairness of how additional players change the game at the most critical time of the season, the roster limits could be adjusted during the next off-season.
Angels Manager Mike Scioscia, for example, has long championed a process in which each team need not add the same number of call-ups, but must identify which five call-ups would be active for any game.
SIGN UP for the free Dodgers Dugout newsletter >>
On Tuesday, the Rockies set a major league record by using 13 pitchers.
The Rockies listed 14 active relievers. They used 12 as pitchers — and a 13th, Jason Gurka, as an emergency right fielder, after an injury to Carlos Gonzalez.
Colorado Manager Walt Weiss called Gurka "a pretty good power shagger." Gurka said he last played the outfield eight years ago, in college.
"I was nervous," he said. "The whole time I was out there, I was saying, 'Please don't hit it to me.' "
One ball was hit to him, a single that he fielded cleanly.
"It was a weird night all around — a pitcher ends up in right field at the end of the game; it rains in L.A.," Weiss said. "… It was a strange one."
The game was decided when Rockies third baseman Nolan Arenado hit a 95-mph Mat Latos pitch into the bleachers for a home run in the top of the 16th. In the bottom of the inning, recently acquired Dodger Ronald Torreyes struck out with a runner on third for the final out, five hours and 23 minutes after the game started.
It was the Dodgers' longest game, innings-wise, since a 17-inning game in 2007. The Dodgers used 11 pitchers and 28 players total, both franchise records.