Ozuna is Picture-Perfect and The Best Bat Flips of the Postseason

Now with gloves!

It is finally the playoffs, meaning stakes are higher than ever for the teams in the hunt. It also means that bat flips are higher than ever too, as the bright lights create unforgettable moments from the unlikeliest of heroes (which are then hopefully followed up with equally stunning bat tosses). Come dive in and check out the best celebrations of the postseason with a special edition of the best bat flips of the Wild Card and Division Series rounds. And as always, be sure to sound off below if you feel there’s a moment we missed (but we assure you, the rankings are flawless). Here we go!


12. Mike Brosseau vs. Aroldis Chapman



ALDS Game 5 – NYY @ TB

375ft, 105.2 mph, 22° launch angle

While not an overwhelmingly stylish bat flip by itself, the context surrounding this clutch home run by Mike Brosseau merits recognition all the same. After a tense regular season spat where Brosseau had to duck out of the way from a 100mph beanball from Chapman, he got his revenge with a game-winning home run in the deciding Game 5 of the ALDS against New York. The home run and subsequent dance party were one of the greatest moments from the 2020 postseason thus far, and Rays fans will be replaying this one for years to come.

Style: 8

Rotation: ~100°, then more of a roll

Catharsis: 10


11. Carlos Correa vs. Frankie Montas



ALDS Game 4 – OAK @ HOU

427ft, 111.6 mph, 31° launch angle

Carlos Correa continued his torment of both postseason pitching and fans’ belief in baseball karma when he launched this three-run home run off of Frankie Montas on Thursday, turning around a 3-2 A’s lead and all but punching Houston’s ticket to the ALCS. Immediately following contact, Correa seemed to morph into a T-Rex, with his arms flexing together close to his sides. He gets a great rotation with his bat here too, as he sends it propelling towards the dugout.

Style: 8

Rotation: 540°

Stress of a 2017 Re-Run: 11


10. Randy Arozarena vs. Gerrit Cole



ALDS Game 1 – NYY @ TB

410ft, 107.3 mph, 33° launch angle

Randy Arozarena has emerged as an early candidate for playoff MVP after slugging the Rays through the first two rounds of the postseason. The first of Arozarena’s three home runs in the ALDS (in three straight games!) came at the expense of Yankees ace Gerrit Cole, and helped the Rays to strike back after giving up a run in the top of the first. Arozarena looks surprisingly calm here for someone who just crushed a key home run off of an ace pitcher in the playoffs, with a sweet toss down the line.

Style: 8

Height: 8.5 

Swagger: 9


9. Giancarlo Stanton vs. John Curtiss



ALDS Game 1 – NYY @ TB

411ft, 107.9 mph, 23° launch angle

It took the entire season, but Giancarlo Stanton finally gave us a bat flip to remember against the Rays last week. Typically the home run-clubbing juggernauts like Stanton, Judge, and Gallo are so used to clobbering the ball that they just gently set the bat down instead, but Stanton’s dagger of a grand slam in the playoffs merited a little extra excitement from the slugger and he sent his bat flying. Slam Diego, indeed.

Style: 8.5 

Rotation: 540°

Blast Radius: 25 sq.mi


8. Ronald Acuña Jr. vs. Sandy Alcántara



NLDS Game 1: MIA @ ATL

428ft, 109.5 mph, 31° launch angle

Ronald Acuña Jr. continued his vendetta against Marlins pitching with a monster drive off of Sandy Alcántara to set the tone for the Atlanta offense in their first at-bat of the division series. He pimped it with a floating bat toss too, looking like someone tired of people telling him how to play baseball. It was just the beginning for the Atlanta offense in the NLDS, as they combined for 18 runs in their three-game sweep of Miami.

Style: 8.5

Rotation: 180°

Finesse: 9


7. Gio Urshela vs. James Karinchak



ALWC Game 2 – NYY @ CLE

432ft, 108.3 mph, 28° launch angle

Gio Urshela delivered the coup de grâce to a floundering Cleveland pitching staff when he crushed this full-count fastball deep into the night for a grand slam against James Karinchak. Urshela knew it was gone off the bat, and stunted with an exaggerated flip as he jogged towards first, his gold chain bouncing off of his chest as he ran.

Style: 9

Rotation: 450°

Hangtime: 8


6. Luis Robert vs. Mike Fiers



ALWC Game 3 – CWS @ OAK

487ft, 112.2 mph, 32° launch angle

487 FEET. 487 FEET. Before we even get into the ensuing celebration, can we all take a moment to recognize how absurd it is that a human could hit a ball that far? Okay, great. Luis Robert launched an absolute nuke off of American hero Mike Fiers, and then followed up his destruction with a furious heave of his bat, sending it tumbling away like a plane propeller.

Style: 9

Rotation: 450°

Weight Room: In Use


5. Manny Machado vs. Giovanny Gallegos



Heading into the final innings of the second game of the Wild Card Series, it seemed that the Cardinals were going to pull off tiptoeing around the dangerous Padres offense that had looked asleep to begin the postseason. That all changed with a home run swing from Fernando Tatís Jr., who was immediately followed by Manny Machado with one of his own. And if Tatís’ shot woke up the Padres bench, Machado’s sent them into a frenzy, stoking a rally that helped San Diego to come back and steal the short series. The flip was dripping in Manny’s signature bravado and sass, and he pounded his chest as he sent his bat spinning off into the grass.

Style: 9.5

Rotation: 540°

Manny: Being Manny


4. Marcell Ozuna vs. Raisel Iglesias



NLWC Game 2 – CIN @ ATL

429ft, 107.1 mph, 26° launch angle

Marcell Ozuna lit the Internet ablaze last week with his celebration following a clutch two-run bomb off of Raisel Iglesias. After taking a few steps to admire his blast, Ozuna flipped his bat away, but he wasn’t done yet. After briefly breaking into a trot, Ozuna stopped again, this time to mime a selfie with his teammates before starting back into his victory lap. This opens an entire world of opportunity for post-homer celebrations, and Ozuna’s incorporation of his teammates into the bit made it just about perfect. After all, a picture is worth a thousand words.

Style: 9.5

Rotation: 90°

Composition: 10


3. Manny Machado vs. Clayton Kershaw



NLDS Game 2 – SD @ LAD

396ft, 108.1 mph, 21° launch angle

Part of the fun of postseason baseball is how almost even the best of pitchers get touched up by the potent offenses of contending teams. On this list already we’ve featured Gerrit Cole, as well as flamethrowing relievers Chapman and James Karinchak. Clayton Kershaw is the latest to join their ranks following this 396-foot bomb Manny Machado dug out to cut the Dodgers lead to two in the second game of the NLDS. After lying dormant for the first half of the game, Machado tried to wake up the Padres dugout with this javelin toss of his bat, echoing shades of Tim Anderson.

Style: 9.5


Distance: 9.5


2. Fernando Tatís Jr. vs. Giovanny Gallegos



NLWC Game 2 – STL @ SD

377ft, 103.3 mph, 22° launch angle

Oh, and he’s done it again. Fernando Tatís Jr. continued to pulverize the baseball into the playoffs, lighting a fire under the Padres offense when he clocked this 2-2 pitch from Giovanny Gallegos for a clutch three-run homer. He was immediately followed up by Machado going yard, which brought the Padres back from the brink of elimination and back into the short series. Tatís got the dugout fired up with this shot, bringing them to their feet with his righteous bat flip.

Style: 10

Rotation: 900°

Hype: 9.5


1. Fernando Tatís Jr. vs. Daniel Ponce de Leon



NLWC Game 2 – STL @ SD

366ft, 103.0 mph, 28° launch angle

If you’ve been an avid follower of the Best Bat Flip rankings in 2020, you may be forgiven for thinking this article is just a weekly monument to the exploits of Fernando Tatís Jr. However, in my defense: He is so unbelievably cool and good at baseball. This monster home run completed a season-saving comeback against Daniel Ponce de Leon and the Cardinals bullpen, and shifted the momentum in San Diego’s favor in the first round. Tatís’ huge two-homer performance was then capped off by this nasty strut and dismissive bat flip as Tatís cemented himself in Padres postseason lore in just his first trip to the playoffs.

Style: 10

Rotation: Yes

Stank: 10


Honorable Mention: Brusdar Graterol vs. Rawlings



In what is sure to be one of the more memorable moments of the 2020 postseason, the young fireballer Brusdar Graterol gave us our first celebratory glove toss following a remarkable play by his teammate and 2019 NL MVP Cody Bellinger. Bellinger had just robbed (sigh, him again?) Fernando Tatís Jr. of a go-ahead home run, saving Graterol’s night in relief in the process. In a stunning display of gratitude, Graterol first flung away his glove, before also pitching his hat toward the sidelines, garnering some chirping from the San Diego dugout as well as apprehension from the fun-loving color commentator, John Smoltz. Manny Machado notably took exception with Graterol’s celebration, to which Brusdar returned some tongue-in-cheek kisses to the third baseman. And while some tried to argue Graterol shouldn’t be celebrating getting bailed out of a jam, it was par for the course in an explosive NLDS that featured Machado launching his bat like a spear after hitting a home run while still down on the scoreboard. Just relax, and let the kids have fun. Baseball is better that way.

Style: 11

Fastball: 101

Owing Bellinger Dinner: Pricey


Wow. Two rounds down and we’ve already seen some of the most explosive bat flips we have seen all year. I’m on the edge of my seat waiting to see what the league championships and World Series will bring, and the unforgettable moments yet to be created. Be sure to check in again next week for another special playoff roundup of the best bat flips from around the league, and until then, enjoy the playoffs. See you next time!

Photo Gerry Angus/Icon Sportswire | Adapted by Michael Packard (@designsbypack on Twitter & IG)

Noah Scott

Noah Scott is a long-suffering baseball writer and knuckleball connoisseur. If you want to talk old timey baseball names, traffic on the 405, or lukewarm hip-hop opinions you can find him on Twitter @noahascott6

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