The finale of the regular season on Sept. 28 was one of the most electrifying nights in the history of the game — a drama spanning five hours, two ballparks, and one profound collapse. The Rays and Red Sox entered the night in a tie for the AL wild card. The Yankees took a 7-0 lead over the Rays. Meanwhile, 1,000 miles away, the Red Sox were up 3-2 on the lowly Orioles. After a rain delay, the Rays mounted a furious comeback. The O's were busy with a comeback of their own, beating the Red Sox 7-3. The Sox's only hope was a Yank win. Rays 3B Evan Longoria wouldn't have it. He smashed the game winner in the 12th inning. Over in the NL, the Braves also completed an epic September collapse, losing to the Phillies in 13 innings and handing the Cardinals the NL wild card.
Pound for pound
Jim Thome reached the 600-HR milestone in style, smacking Nos. 599 and 600 back-to-back vs. the Tigers on Aug. 15.
How do you like that?
New York Yankees closer Mariano Rivera acknowledges the cheers of the crowd after recording his 602nd career save. Rivera pitched a perfect ninth as he broke the all-time saves record held by Trevor Hoffman.
On Oct. 27, the St. Louis Cardinals won one of the most entertaining games in World Series history. After twice being down to their last strike before being eliminated, the Cardinals rallied to fight back against the Rangers. The evening was capped by David Freese, who belted an 11th-inning walk-off home run to give the Cards the 10-9 victory. The Cards went on to claim the World Championship, beating the deflated Rangers 6-2, behind a stellar start from Chris Carpenter. Cardinals slugger Albert Pujols made history Oct. 22 in Game 3 of the World Series, hitting three home runs and joining Babe Ruth and Reggie Jackson as just the third player ever to do so in a Fall Classic game.
On July 9, Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter had a game for the ages. Not only did he collect his 3,000th hit (all with the Yankees) on a home run, he went 5-for-5 on the day and drove in the game-winning run.