Games played is a statistic that counts the number of times a player has been used in a game. The number includes situations where the player may not actually have gotten on the field during live action, such as when a player is announced into the game as a pinch-hitter, only to be replaced by another pinch-hitter before completing an at bat, or when a relief pitcher begins his warm-up throws on the mound but is removed because of an injury before actually throwing a pitch.
While there are 162 games scheduled in a season, a player can accumulate a greater number of games played because of tie games, which are then replayed in their entirety, and playoff games which count as regular season games. Thus, Maury Wills was able to play 165 games in a 162-game season in 1962, as the result of a three-game playoff, which is the single-season record.
In certain sources, pitchers are only credited with a game played if they appear in the boxscore as batters. Thus, they are not credited with a game played if they pitch in a game when the designated hitter is used. This is an error caused by software which generates statistics directly from boxscores that only list pitchers under pitching statistics and not under hitting statistics. This became very noticeable when interleague play began in 1997 and National League pitchers were not credited with games played for their appearances in games played in American League ballparks where the DH was in use, creating absurdities in their hitting lines. Most sources have now corrected this error, but it can still be found in a number of older records dating to the 1997-2002 period.
|All Time Leaders|
|MLB Career||Pete Rose||3,562|
|MLB Season||Maury Wills||165||1962|