No games last season finished better than these

December 8th, 2019

There's nothing like a dramatic finish to a baseball game. From the walk-off homer to the tremendous game-saving catch, there are so many ways the drama of a tight contest can conclude. With that in mind, here are the top 40 finishes we saw in 2019, as counted down by MLB Network.

1. Nationals come back to defeat Astros for first World Series title, Game 7 -- Oct. 30

The Astros were nine outs from winning their second World Series championship in three years, but the Nationals were undeterred in their effort to capture their first in franchise history. In the seventh inning of World Series Game 7, Anthony Rendon belted a solo home run to cut the deficit to 2-1, and after a Juan Soto walk, Howie Kendrick -- the club's improbable postseason hero -- delivered a go-ahead two-run shot off the right-field foul pole. Washington would tack on three more runs before reliever Daniel Hudson closed out the game and the World Series with a 1-2-3 ninth at Minute Maid Park.

2. Jose Altuve sends the Astros to the World Series, ALCS Game 6 -- Oct. 19

The Astros gave up a two-run lead in the ninth inning of ALCS Game 6 against the Yankees when DJ LeMahieu launched a game-tying homer to right field off Roberto Osuna. But after it seemed as though all the air was let out of Minute Maid Park, it didn't take long for jubilation to ensue. Jose Altuve sent Houston to the World Series for the second time in three years with a walk-off two-run homer off Aroldis Chapman in the bottom of the ninth, leaving the Yankees stunned and sending Minute Maid Park into a frenzy.

3. Aaron Hicks saves the day -- Yankees at Twins, July 23

It was an epic game that deserved an epic finish, and it got one. After homering earlier in the game, center fielder Aaron Hicks sprinted into left-center field, dove full-extension and robbed Minnesota's Max Kepler of what would surely have been a game-tying extra-base hit, if not a walk-off hit with the bases loaded and two outs. The spectacular catch closed out a see-saw marathon between the Yankees and Twins that lasted more than five hours and ended with a final of 14-12.

4. Kendrick's clutch slam stuns Dodgers, NLDS Game 5 -- Nationals at Dodgers, Oct. 9

The Nationals shocked the Dodgers and the baseball world when Howie Kendrick launched a grand slam in the 10th inning to put Washington up, 7-3, which was the score by which it defeated the heavyweights of the National League in NLDS Game 5 at Dodger Stadium. Prior to the Kendrick slam, Anthony Rendon and Juan Soto hit back-to-back home runs off Clayton Kershaw in the eighth inning to tie the game at 3.

5. Suzuki caps incredible comeback with walk-off shot -- Mets at Nationals, Sept. 3

Trailing the Mets, 5-4, through eight, the Nationals entered the bottom of the ninth with a 10-4 deficit, then mounted an incredible rally. It started with Victor Robles singling to lead off the frame. Howie Kendrick then flew out to right field before Trea Turner doubled home Robles. Three consecutive singles from Asdrubal Cabrera, Anthony Rendon and Juan Soto followed. With the score now 10-6, Ryan Zimmerman doubled in two more runs, setting the stage for Kurt Suzuki, who launched a walk-off three-run homer off Edwin Diaz to cap the miraculous comeback, an 11-10 victory.

6-10. Elite closers get crushed, postseason heroes emerge

In this group of spectacular finishes, Craig Kimbrel and Kenley Jansen get hit hard in the ninth inning, and Carlos Correa and Juan Soto play postseason hero for the Astros and Nationals, respectively. Oh, and for good measure, throw in a game-saving home run robbery from Lorenzo Cain.

11-15. JV completes another no-no, Braves-Cards NLDS

Included in this set of fantastic finishes are a couple of different NLDS contests decided late between the Braves and Cardinals, as well as the third no-hitter of Justin Verlander's tremendous career.

16-20. Harper's grand slam sprint, Angels' emotional no-no, spectacular Soto

Bryce Harper turns in the fastest home run trot of his career with a walk-off slam, the Angels honor late teammate Tyler Skaggs with an emotional combined no-hitter while wearing No. 45 in tribute, and Juan Soto does Juan Soto things in this group of exciting endings.

21-25. Twins ice AL Central, no Yelich is no problem, a Giant comeback

In this set, Miguel Sano helps the Twins all but wrap up the division crown, the Brewers keep rolling even after losing reigning NL MVP Christian Yelich and the Giants erase an eight-run deficit to stun the Reds.

26-30. Milwaukee marathon, 19-inning nail-biter, I see your Jansen and raise you a Hader

A couple of wild finishes to a couple of wild games -- one that ended 15-14 and another that went seven hours and 19 innings -- as well as more elite closers getting crushed in this group of memorable finishes.

31-35. JBJ gets robbed and then robs, Yelich times four

We're used to seeing Jackie Bradley Jr. make amazing catches to rob homers, but this time he's the one getting robbed, by Baltimore's Stevie Wilkerson. But don't worry, JBJ gets his home run robbery vengeance, bringing one back against the Orioles' Trey Mancini to save the game. Christian Yelich opened the season with four homers in four games, and he added a walk-off double for good measure in the fourth one.

36-40. Wilkerson for the save, Lorenzen does it all, and the Dodgers with de ja vu all over again

Stevie Wilkerson didn't see himself pitching in the 15th inning of a game against the Angels, but there he was, picking up the save. Michael Lorenzen is used to playing multiple roles, and did that in a big way against the Phillies to make history. And the Dodgers walked off for a win over the Rockies not once, not twice, but three straight times, with Will Smith doing the honors in the third game.