Let's say goodbye to October by ranking every single 2017 postseason game
As wonderful as Hot Stove Season is, it's going to be a little while before big league baseball returns to our lives in earnest.
But don't fret, there's still one more order of 2017 business to attend to: In celebration of one of the craziest postseasons in recent memory, we've gone ahead and ranked all 38 games that took place this October. Disagree with our list? Make sure to let us know in the comments.
38. ALDS Game 2: Astros 8, Red Sox 2
The Astros jumped on Drew Pomeranz early and added four runs in the sixth to put the game away as Dallas Keuchel cruised.
37. ALDS Game 1: Indians 4, Yankees 0
Trevor Bauer's line in Cleveland's postseason opener: 6 2/3 innings, two hits, no runs, eight K's.
36. ALCS Game 3: Yankees 8, Astros 1
Three-run homers from Todd Frazier and Aaron Judge essentially put the game away in the fourth as the Yankees got their first win of the ALCS.
35. NLCS Game 3: Dodgers 6, Cubs 1
Kyle Schwarber hit a first-inning homer as Chicago tried to climb back into the series, but from there, it was all Yu Darvish and the Dodgers' offense.
34. NLDS Game 1: Dodgers 9, D-backs 5
The D-backs hung around, hitting four homers off of Clayton Kershaw, but L.A. knocked out starter Taijuan Walker after just one inning and were never seriously threatened.
33. ALCS Game 5: Yankees 5, Astros 0
New York got to the previously invincible Keuchel for four runs in 4 2/3 innings, and that was more than enough for a dominant Masahiro Tanaka.
32. ALDS Game 4: Yankees 7, Indians 3
The Indians committed four errors in what was a sloppy game, and that was more than enough for Judge and the Yankees offense to force a Game 5.
31. NLDS Game 2: Dodgers 8, D-backs 5
A Paul Goldschmidt homer gave Arizona the early lead, but seven unanswered runs from the Dodgers more or less put the game away.
30. NLDS Game 3: Dodgers 3, D-backs 1
Darvish faced Zack Greinke in a mouthwatering pitching matchup, but the Arizona righty allowed nine baserunners in his five innings of work and the Dodgers bullpen did the rest.
29. World Series Game 3: Astros 5, Dodgers 3
Houston jumped on Darvish early, knocking him out after just 1 2/3 innings. L.A. chipped away against Lance McCullers Jr., but Brad Peacock's scoreless relief outing kept the Dodgers at bay.
28. NLCS Game 4, Cubs 3, Dodgers 2
Facing a 3-0 series deficit, Jake Arrieta never wavered, allowing just one run over 6 2/3 innings while striking out nine. The Dodgers threatened in the eighth, but Wade Davis slammed the door -- although Joe Maddon wasn't around to see it:
27. ALDS Game 1: Astros 8, Red Sox 2
This was a tie game in the fourth, and then Houston's lineup went absolutely nuts -- especially Jose Altuve, who became just the ninth different hitter to hit three home runs in a postseason game.
26. NLCS Game 1: Dodgers 5, Cubs 2
The Cubs jumped on Kershaw for two early runs, but the Dodgers stormed back in large part thanks to the shenanigans of one Yasiel Puig, who went 2-for-4 with a homer, a double and a bat flip.
I still don't know why my bats are so slippery 😝😝😝😇 pic.twitter.com/uHVT2d9gke- Yasiel Puig (@YasielPuig) October 15, 2017
25. ALCS Game 6: Astros 7, Yankees 1
Justin Verlander's performance in Game 2 was just about impossible to top (we'll get to that), but with Houston's back against the wall in Game 6, he was nearly as good: seven innings, five hits, no runs, eight strikeouts.
24. NLDS Game 1: Cubs 3, Nationals 0
Stephen Strasburg was dominant, taking a no-hitter into the sixth ... at which point it all went horribly wrong: Anthony Rendon's error led to two runs, and the Nats offense couldn't figure out Kyle Hendricks.
23. World Series Game 1: Dodgers 3, Astros 1
We'd waited a decade to finally see Kershaw get a crack at the World Series, and he didn't disappoint: The lefty struck out 11 over seven dominant innings, and Justin Turner's homer off of Keuchel provided the run support.
22. ALDS Game 3: Red Sox 10, Astros 3
The Astros jumped out early, looking to complete the sweep of Boston. Of course, Fenway Park is never that easy: Boston put up a six-spot in the seventh, capped by one of the most cosmically weird home runs you'll ever see.
21. ALCS Game 7: Astros 4, Yankees 0
Judge did his best to keep things scoreless, but Houston eventually broke through against CC Sabathia. The combination of Charlie Morton and the endless curveball barrage of McCullers punched the Astros' ticket to the World Series.
20. AL Wild Card Game: Yankees 8, Twins 4
When Minnesota knocked Luis Severino out of the game after three runs and just one out, things looked grim for the Yankees. But Didi Gregorius got Yankee Stadium back in it with a three-run homer, and New York's bullpen took it from there.
19. NL Wild Card Game: D-backs 11, Rockies 8
Arizona built a 6-0 lead against Jon Gray, but the Rockies never quit. Colorado cut it to 6-5 and then 8-7, but triples from A.J. Pollock and Archie Bradley -- yes, that Archie Bradley -- put it away.
18. ALDS Game 5: Yankees 5, Indians 2
New York had won two in a row to force a Game 5, but the Indians were still the AL's best team -- with arguably the AL's best pitcher, Corey Kluber, on the mound. Two Gregorius homers and some clutch pitching later, the Yankees completed the comeback.
17. ALCS Game 1: Astros 2, Yankees 1
A pitchers' duel in which just about every at-bat was tense. Keuchel was awesome, holding New York scoreless over seven innings with a pretty big assist from Marwin Gonzalez's arm.
16. NLCS Game 5: Dodgers 11, Cubs 1
Enrique Hernandez joined Altuve in the three-homer game club to send L.A. to its first Fall Classic since 1988.
15. World Series Game 7: Astros 5, Dodgers 1
Yes, it was Game 7 of the World Series, but Houston's five runs over the first two innings -- combined with Morton's great work in relief -- sucked most of the suspense out of things. Still, watching the Astros celebrate was hard to top -- particularly Carlos Correa's use of the opportunity to ask an important question.
14. NLDS Game 3: Cubs 2, Nationals 1
Once again a Washington starter flirted with a no-hitter only to watch it -- and the lead -- slip away. This time it was Max Scherzer, who threw six hitless innings before Ben Zobrist broke it up with a double. Zobrist eventually came around to score the tying run, and Anthony Rizzo's bloop single the next inning blew the roof off of Wrigley and gave the Cubs a come-from-behind win.
13. ALDS Game 3: Yankees 1, Indians 0
Tanaka and Carlos Carrasco were both on fire, and it seemed like the first pitcher to make a mistake would lose the game. Surprisingly, that turned out to be Andrew Miller, who gave up a homer to Greg Bird -- his first to a left-handed batter all year -- that proved to be the difference.
12. World Series Game 6: Dodgers 3, Astros 1
Houston scratched across an early run, and with Verlander looking just as dominant as he had been all postseason, it seemed like the Astros were well on their way to winning it all. Then the sixth inning rolled around:
L.A. scored two runs to take the lead, and Kenley Jansen made it hold up with a two-inning save.
11. NLDS Game 2: Nationals 6, Cubs 3
After being shut out by Hendricks in Game 1, Washington was again frustrated on offense, trailing, 3-1, heading into the bottom of the eighth. Luckily, when you have Bryce Harper in your lineup, you're always just one swing away from waking up: Harper's two-run homer tied the game and sparked a five-run rally that gave the Nats the win.
10. NLDS Game 4: Nationals 5, Cubs 0
Otherwise known as Strasburg's Flu Game. Once the righty took the mound, he pitched the game of his life. Strasburg struck out 12 over seven shutout innings, and Michael A. Taylor's eighth-inning grand slam provided some much-needed insurance.
9. ALDS Game 4: Astros 5, Red Sox 4
Making his first-ever relief appearance, Verlander gave up a go-ahead two-run homer to Andrew Benintendi in the fifth. Like they would do all October, though, the Astros rallied: First Alex Bregman took Chris Sale deep to tie the game in the eighth, then Houston pushed across a couple more for good measure.
Ken Giles came on to slam the door and send Houston to its first ALCS -- but not without some shenanigans in the bottom of the ninth.
8. World Series Game 4: Dodgers 6, Astros 2
Alex Wood took a no-hitter into the sixth, only to lose it on a go-ahead homer by George Springer. The game went into the ninth inning tied, 1-1, where Cody Bellinger picked a great time to break out of his postseason slump with a go-ahead double that led to a five-run rally.
7. NLCS Game 2: Dodgers 4, Cubs 1
Jon Lester, Rich Hill and the bullpens combined for a tight, tense pitchers' duel, sending the game to the bottom of the ninth in a 1-1 tie. Maddon called on John Lackey for his second consecutive relief appearance, and with two runners on, Turner went deep for the Dodgers' first walk-off postseason homer since You Know Who.
6. ALCS Game 2: Astros 2, Yankees 1
When the Astros acquired Verlander just seconds before the August Trade Deadline, this was the kind of performance they envisioned: a complete game five-hitter with 13 strikeouts. Of course, the Astros still needed to provide some run support, and in the bottom of the ninth, Altuve and Correa combined to do it in breathtaking fashion:
5. ALCS Game 4: Yankees 6, Astros 4
After Yuli Gurriel's double cleared the bases to put Houston up 3-0 in the sixth, it looked like the Astros were on their way to a commanding 3-1 series lead. Yankee Stadium, however, had other ideas:
In the seventh and eighth innings, New York scored six runs on six hits in a comeback for the ages.
4. ALDS Game 2: Indians 9, Yankees 8
The Yankees hammered Kluber, building an 8-3 lead in the sixth -- at which point utter madness descended on Progressive Field. With two men on and two out for the Indians, Lonnie Chisenhall was hit by a pitch to load the bases ... or so it appeared.
Replays showed that the ball actually hit the knob of Chisenhall's bat and caromed into Gary Sanchez's glove for what should have been an inning-ending strikeout. Instead, Francisco Lindor came up, and got Cleveland right back into the game:
Jay Bruce tied the game with a homer in the eighth, and after four excruciating extra innings, the Indians finally walked off in the 13th.
3. NLDS Game 5: Cubs 9, Nationals 8
With a trip to the NLCS on the line, the Cubs and Nats packed a whole series worth of twists and turns into one game.
First, Washington scored four in the second, only to watch the Cubs come right back and cut it to 4-3. Chicago then took the lead in the fifth on one of the most bizarre sequences you'll ever see: intentional walk, dropped third strike/throwing error, catcher's interference, hit by pitch. The Nationals trailed, 9-7, heading into the eighth, when two walks and two singles put the tying run into scoring position ... until Jose Lobaton was just barely caught too far off of first.
With the entire baseball world sufficiently exhausted, Davis, in his third inning of work, retired Harper for the final out.
2. World Series Game 2: Astros 7, Dodgers 6
In just about every other Fall Classic, this would have been the headline game. The Dodgers had things right where they wanted them: a 3-2 lead heading into the ninth inning, the untouchable Jansen on the mound, just three outs from a 2-0 series lead. Gonzalez, however, had other plans.
That dinger was the first of six the two teams would combine for over the game's final three innings -- including five in extras -- setting a new Major League record. With the Dodgers' bullpen depleted, Altuve and Correa went deep in the top of the 10th and Houston looked to have things wrapped up. But Puig launched a homer of his own, and with two outs, Hernandez smacked a game-tying single into right.
In the 11th, Springer launched his campaign for World Series MVP with a two-run shot off of Brandon McCarthy to give Houston an incredible win.
1. World Series Game 5: Astros 13, Dodgers 12
The Dodgers staked Kershaw to leads of 4-0 and 7-4, but the Astros answered every time. Houston kept on hitting, eventually taking a 12-9 lead into the ninth inning. This time, though, it was the Dodgers who rallied: Puig got things going with a two-run homer, and Chris Taylor's two-out RBI single sent the game to extra innings -- at which point, all anyone could do was laugh:
LOL- MLB (@MLB) October 30, 2017
Finally, in the 10th, Houston sent everybody home -- Bregman lined a walk-off single to hand Jansen the first postseason loss of his career.