The Dodgers and Nationals are set to square off in Game 5 of the National League Division Series tonight in a winner-take-all contest (8 p.m. ET on FS1). The victor moves on to face the Cubs in the NL Championship Series, while the losing team is headed home.Ahead of the
The Dodgers and Nationals are set to square off in Game 5 of the National League Division Series tonight in a winner-take-all contest (8 p.m. ET on FS1). The victor moves on to face the Cubs in the NL Championship Series, while the losing team is headed home.
Ahead of the highly anticipated matchup, here is a look at the most dramatic of the 27 Division Series Game 5s in the Wild Card era.
• DYK? Winner-take-all Game 5 history
Oct. 8, 1995: Mariners 6, Yankees 5
The Mariners tied the score in the bottom of the eighth inning on a bases-loaded walk by pinch-hitter Doug Strange, only to see the Yankees take an 11th-inning lead on a Randy Velarde single. Joey Cora reached on a bunt single to begin the bottom of the 11th, and Ken Griffey Jr. followed with a single up the middle to put runners on the corners off Yankees reliever Jack McDowell. Edgar Martinez then ripped a double down the left-field line, scoring Cora and Griffey to send the Mariners to the American League Championship Series for the first time in franchise history.
Oct. 14, 2001: D-backs 2, Cardinals 1
D-backs manager Bob Brenly rode right-hander Curt Schilling, who had Arizona staring down a spot in the NL Championship Series before allowing a game-tying solo home run to J.D. Drew in the top of the eighth inning. The D-backs found a way to advance anyway, as Tony Womack sliced a single into left-center field in the bottom of the ninth to score pinch-runner Danny Bautista from second base and punch Arizona's ticket to the NLCS for the first time in team history.
Oct. 7, 2011: Brewers 3, D-backs 2
Willie Bloomquist nearly saved Arizona's chance at a trip to the NLCS, tying the score at 2-2 with an RBI bunt single off Brewers reliever John Axford in the top of the ninth. Unable to push across a run in the ninth, Milwaukee got its chance when Carlos Gómez singled and stole second in the 10th. Nyjer Morgan then laced a single up the box off J.J. Putz to send Milwaukee to an LDS for the first time since 1982 (when the Brewers played in the AL).
The crazy comebacks
Oct. 12, 2012: Cardinals 9, Nationals 7
The Nationals jumped out to a commanding 6-0 lead in the first three innings, seeking their first trip to the NLCS in team history. The Cardinals climbed back, scoring runs in five of the final six innings, including four runs in the ninth, to stun Washington and advance to the NLCS for the second straight year.
Oct. 14, 2015: Blue Jays 6, Rangers 3
This Game 5 featured about everything you could possibly ask for in a postseason contest: a few wacky plays, multiple bench-clearing incidents and one of the most iconic home runs in recent memory. José Bautista's emphatic game-winning three-run blast in the seventh inning featured a bat flip for the ages and helped Toronto advance to the ALCS for the first time since 1993.
The one-run nailbiters
Oct. 6, 1997: Indians 4, Yankees 3
The Indians scored three in the third inning on a Manny Ramirez two-run double followed by a Matt Williams RBI single. They increased their lead to four in the fourth, but the Yankees came back with two runs in the fifth and one in the sixth. Cleveland's bullpen arms -- Mike Jackson, Paul Assenmacher and Jose Mesa -- locked down the New York bats over the final three innings to help Cleveland move on to the ALCS for the second time in three seasons.
Oct. 6, 2002: Twins 5, A's 4
The Twins held a 2-1 lead entering the ninth inning before A.J. Pierzynski blasted a two-run homer off A's reliever Billy Koch. David Ortiz followed a few batters later with an RBI double, which was ultimately the game winner. Minnesota reliever Eddie Guardado served up a three-run bomb to Mark Ellis in the bottom of the ninth, but Oakland fell a run short.
Oct. 6, 2003: Red Sox 4, A's 3
Down 1-0 heading to the sixth inning, the Red Sox were finally able to solve A's starter Barry Zito. Jason Varitek's solo homer and Ramirez's three-run long ball capped a four-run inning for Boston, which rode Pedro Martinez until he allowed a run in the eighth. Boston's bullpen closed it out, with Derek Lowe recording the save as the Red Sox secured a berth to the ALCS.
Oct. 6, 2011: Tigers 3, Yankees 2
Don Kelly and Delmon Young hit back-to-back home runs in the first inning to help the Tigers jump out to a lead, and they let their pitching do the rest. Victor Martinez's RBI single in the fifth proved to be the difference as the Tigers' bullpen allowed one run over four innings.
Oct. 7, 2011: Cardinals 1, Phillies 0
Right-handers Chris Carpenter and Roy Halladay matched each other pitch-for-pitch in a tight duel after Skip Schumaker's RBI double in the first inning. It turned out to be the only run the Cardinals needed as Carpenter twirled a three-hit shutout -- the lone complete game of his postseason career.
Oct. 15, 2015: Mets 3, Dodgers 2
Postseason breakout star Daniel Murphy accounted for nearly all of the Mets' offense, helping knock Dodgers starter Zack Greinke out of the game with a solo home run in the sixth inning. Murphy added a single, double and stolen base, and Noah Syndergaard and Jeurys Familia shut out Los Angeles over the final three innings to send New York to the NLCS for the first time since 2006.
The best singular performances
Oct. 11, 1999: Red Sox 12, Indians 8
Backing up Martinez's six shutout relief innings was the bat of Troy O'Leary. Boston's left fielder clubbed a grand slam in the third inning to give the Red Sox the lead, and he smacked a three-run shot in the seventh -- a blast that ultimately turned out to be the game winner. His seven RBIs that day are tied for the most in a postseason game.
Oct. 11, 2004: Astros 12, Braves 3
The Astros cruised to victory thanks to a ridiculous day at the plate from Carlos Beltrán. The outfielder went 4-for-5 with two home runs and five RBIs as Houston won easily at Turner Field.
Oct. 12, 2012: Yankees 3, Orioles 1
The Yankees turned to ace CC Sabathia to advance to the ALCS, and he did not disappoint. The left-hander delivered the only complete game thus far of his postseason career, striking out nine Orioles and allowing one run on an RBI single to Lew Ford.
Oct. 11, 2012: Tigers 6, A's 0
The Athletics couldn't handle Justin Verlander on this fateful October night, when the right-hander twirled a four-hit shutout. He struck out 11 A's over the course of the night, issuing one free pass. It remains the only complete game of his postseason career thus far.
Oliver Macklin is a reporter for MLB.com..