These are the Top 100 Plays of 2019

November 18th, 2019

Every MLB season has its share of spectacular defensive plays, walk-off home runs and milestone moments. The 2019 season was no exception, and it gave us far more than 100 plays to be awed by. But let's look at MLB Network's Top 100 Plays of 2019. Fair warning: Playing these videos is likely to cause you to rewatch them to make sure what you saw actually happened.

No. 1: Jackie Bradley Jr. sprints into left-center field and makes an unbelievable leaping catch to rob Trey Mancini of a homer, May 8

By now, we're used to incredible plays by Bradley. It's gotten to the point where it's only a matter of time before he does what we thought was impossible -- top the last jaw-dropping play he made. He did that again on May 8 at Camden Yards when he sprinted after a drive hit into left-center field by the Orioles' Mancini, and all in one fluid motion went from sprint to leap at the wall, catching the ball with his entire upper body over the fence. Just JBJ -- Jackie being Jackie.

No. 2: Stevie Wilkerson makes a tremendous leaping catch while slamming into the Fenway Park wall and flipping over before landing on his feet on the warning track, robbing Jackie Bradley Jr. of a home run, Sept. 29

This time, Bradley was on the other end of a ridiculously sensational play at the wall to bring back a homer. Wilkerson measured it up in front of the 380-foot marker in right field at Fenway, leaped, caught the ball while slamming into the short wall, flipped over and somehow landed on his feet.

No. 3: Ramón Laureano robs Teoscar Hernández of a homer before launching the ball back to the infield in what ended up being one of the strangest plays of the year, April 21

That thing attached to the right side of Laureano's upper body is something he calls an arm, but to anyone who has seen what it can do, it's more like a cannon. We saw that arm make awe-inspiring throws before, but this one topped even those. It started with a highlight-reel play before he even needed to throw the baseball -- Laureano ran back to the center-field wall at the Oakland Coliseum, leaped and brought what would surely have been a Hernández homer back.

Once his feet returned to Earth, Laureano fired a missile of a throw over everyone, but catcher Nick Hundley made a great play backing up the infield. Once he had it in front of the first-base dugout, Hundley saw Toronto's Justin Smoak heading for second and fired an off-balance throw right on the money to get him.

No. 4: 'I wanna be like Mike' -- Austin Hays replicates Mike Trout's famous home run robbery in Baltimore, Sept. 19

Toronto was victimized again in this amazing play. Vladimir Guerrero Jr. launched a ball deep to center field at Camden Yards, where Hays drifted back and made a nearly identical catch to Trout's famous grab in Baltimore back in 2012, with his left side slamming into the fence while he made a full-extension catch to take a homer away from the Blue Jays' phenom.

No. 5: LoCain taking Mile High to another level, Sept. 28

Lorenzo Cain is one of the best center fielders in the game. He makes difficult things look routine on the regular. But this one took every last inch of his 6-foot-2, 205-pound frame. Garrett Hampson thought he had a homer over the center-field wall for the Rockies at Coors Field, but Cain got back there, made a full-extension leap and snow-coned it to rob Hampson.

No. 6: To the Victor go the spoils, except ... not this time if JaCoby Jones has anything to do with it, June 29

Victor Robles smashed a drive to deep left-center field at Comerica Park, and something happened that he's used to, except he's used to being the one making the spectacular play. It was Jones this time, sprinting over and leaping to snatch a ball that was definitely going for a homer.

No. 7: Superman doesn't always wear a cape -- sometimes he's more like a Blue Jay, May 29

Avisail Garcia had a big bounce-back season in 2019, and on this drive to left-center-field, the big man with speed was surely thinking extra bases. But Toronto center fielder Jonathan Davis made a play we all dream of as kids in the backyard -- racing about as far into left-center as you can possibly go before making a "Superman" dive for a spectacular catch.

No. 8: But J.P., HOW? July 27

J.P. Crawford made a great diving play to backhand a hot shot off the bat of the Tigers' Jeimer Candelario at T-Mobile Park. OK, we've seen that a few times. But the genius in this play was how Crawford bounced up off his back leg and made a jump-throw across his body with the baseball coming from behind his head to get the out at first base. How impressive is that arm throwing off a stiff back leg like that?

No. 9: Textbook play by the Rays, from the center-field wall to home plate, Oct. 8

If your kid was at a ballgame, this is how you'd want him to learn to hit the cutoff man. Kevin Kiermaier grabbed a Yordan Alvarez one-hopper off the center-field wall, and José Altuve was racing around third to try and score. Kiermaier fired a perfect strike to shortstop Willy Adames, whose perfect relay throw nabbed Altuve at the plate and saved a huge run in the American League Division Series.

No. 10: Wild game, wild ending -- Aaron Hicks saves the day, July 23

How do you end a crazy 14-12, 10-inning game in appropriate fashion? You make a game-saving, full-extension diving catch in left-center field to ensure a marathon victory doesn't slip through your club's grasp. That's exactly what Hicks did at Target Field on this night, and years from now, when someone says, "Hey, remember that Hicks catch in Minnesota?" You'll know exactly what that person is talking about, because how could you forget?

Nos. 11-20

In this group of incredible plays, you'll see Bryce Harper throwing out a former teammate at Nationals Park, a pair of no-hitters and a pennant-clinching home run. Not too shabby.

Nos. 21-30

Freddy Galvis making a Kevin Mitchell-style barehanded catch in shallow left-center field? Pete Alonso setting a rookie home run record? Lorenzo Cain giving himself an occasion to break out the Dikembe Mutombo finger wag? Manny Machado casually side-arming a throw about 100 feet across the diamond to get an out? Yes, please.

Nos. 31-40

CC Sabathia gets strikeout No. 3,000, Michael Brantley starts one of the greatest double plays you'll ever see in the postseason and Mike Trout robs Christian Yelich of a homer. Need we say more?

Nos. 41-50

Gerrit Cole dominates in the postseason. Lorenzo Cain makes another jaw-dropping catch. Brett Gardner's still got it. And not one, but two straight steals of home in this group.

Nos. 51-60

You won't see a smoother double play than the one David Fletcher and Andrelton Simmons pull off here. Also in this group, Bryce Harper takes the fastest over-the-wall home run trot of his career, Mike Trout shows off his arm, Ryan Zimmerman shows he can still get it done at first base and an amazing backhand flip to second base by third baseman Nolan Arenado.

Nos. 61-70

Lorenzo Cain again (not that it's surprising), Kolten Wong with the touch-pass off a ground ball to start a sweet double play and Cody Bellinger doing MVP-type things from right field. Just some of the incredible plays you'll see here.

Nos. 71-80

Fernando Tatis Jr. dazzles with his glove in his rookie season. Anthony Rendon does the same under the bright lights of October. And a couple of really nice screen plays -- yes, we're still talking about baseball.

Nos. 81-90

In this section of tremendous plays, Nolan Arenado doesn't actually need a glove, Mike Moustakas makes a nifty glove-flip, and two questions: First, what's scarier than Max Scherzer on the mound? Max Scherzer with a black eye on the mound. And second, you know what makes baseball great? Howie Kendrick got the Nationals' two biggest hits of the postseason before Washington won its first World Series title.

Nos. 91-100

Carlos Correa has his fingerprints all over this reel, which also includes some amazing postseason plays and a play on which you'd be tempted to give Rafael Devers an assist if you were the official scorer -- an assist to himself, that is, before he makes the throw to first.