One of the most thrilling home runs of the 2016 postseason was hit by Rajai Davis, a speedster who entered the playoffs with just 55 career homers in 3,999 plate appearances. He hit the home run off Aroldis Chapman, who to that point had allowed just two dingers in 72 2/3 innings pitched.
It was the kind of epic October moment that proved, once again, that sometimes the guys in the smallest roles turn in the biggest October moments.
Here is an under-the-radar or limited-role position player from each postseason club who could shine in the Division Series and beyond.
Davis, Red Sox
Well, sure, might as well start right here, and not because Davis is expected to hit another huge homer (though Bostonians certainly wouldn't complain). The bottom line, as discussed in this space last week, is that the Astros are statistically one of the weakest teams in recent memory at controlling the opponent's running game. Though 36 years old, Davis retains his ability to get good jumps. He's made 85 stolen-base attempts over the last two seasons and been successful at … 85 percent of them. Astros opponents successfully stole off them 88-percent of the time. I'm sure it's hard for Red Sox fans to believe this, but sometimes a late-game stolen base can make a big difference in a ballgame. Just ask the Dodgers' current manager about that.
Andre Ethier, Dodgers
This is the final year of Ethier's six-year contract and could be the last year of his Dodgers career. Because of a multitude of injuries over that time, including the back issue that limited him to just 38 plate appearances this year, Ethier's learned to just appreciate the moment. And though, as of this writing, his spot on the Dodgers' NLDS roster is not nailed down, his experience coming off the bench could be an asset for Dave Roberts. Ethier's two home runs this year were both pinch-hit blasts, and you could see him coming up in the clutch against a lefty.
Michael Taylor, Nationals
Because the Nats had the NL East virtually locked up long ago, it's easy for a national audience to overlook what a good player Taylor has become. Where once it seemed the Nats might have to go outside the organization for help in center field when Adam Eaton went down, Taylor stepped in and turned in a respectable .271/.320/.486 slash, and he had a .926 OPS in the season's final four weeks. Taylor's speed and his glove (nine defensive runs saved) are assets that can play up in October.
Giovanny Urshela, Indians
Though the Indians' decision to roster Urshela for the ALDS against the Yankees was no surprise, the decision to start him over Yandy Diaz (who is not on the roster at all) at third base was a bit eye-catching -- and it comes down to Urshela catching everything. Urshela only started 14 games in September, and his bat is negligible (the Indians will likely use Michael Brantley to pinch-hit for him in high-leverage situations). But Urshela's on this list because he's a virtual lock to make some sort of sick stop. His defense was an underrated key to the Tribe's 22-game winning streak.
Matt Holliday, Yankees
After injuries limited his impact in 2017, the veteran no longer has a set role on this squad. He's the backup DH, which is understandable considering he produced a paltry .179/.225/.300 slash in the second half. But if you don't think the 37-year-old is going to come off the bench cold and inexplicably rip the heart out of some opposing team's fan base, you know absolutely nothing about the New York Yankees. Or the heart of Holliday.
Jon Jay, Cubs
He's far from the first name casual fans associate with the Cubbies, but Jay could be the first name in Joe Maddon's lineup a couple times in this NLDS vs. the Nationals. He's batted leadoff 51 times this year. Obviously, Maddon has some difficult decisions to make with his nightly nine, and Jason Heyward, Albert Almora Jr., Kyle Schwarber, Ben Zobrist and Ian Happ are all starting options depending on whether defense or offense is prioritized in a given matchup. But even if Jay isn't leading things off, he's highly capable of coming through in a big spot, as evidenced by a .325 (13-for-40) showing as a pinch-hitter this season.
Tyler White, Astros
Remember when White was all the April rage in 2016, winning AL Player of the Week in the season's opening week? That didn't pan out too well in the bigger sample, and White eventually took a backseat to Yuli Gurriel. But White can be utilized in a variety of positions off the bench (he's played first, second and left in a limited big league sample this year), and he's an important bench bat, especially given the likelihood that the left-handed David Price serves a prominent 'pen role for the Red Sox in this ALDS.
Daniel Descalso, D-backs
I swear to you I had Descalso on my short list before he homered in the NL Wild Card Game. That sweet swing was a window into the unexpected impact he's provided the D-backs with this year. The bulk of Descalso's value is supposed to rest in his ability to play first, second, third, short and left. But in the midst of compiling career-highs in homers, RBI and walks, Descalso has also provided surprising contributions in the clutch. He actually had the highest "Clutch" measure, as determined by FanGraphs, on the team.
Anthony Castrovince is a Sports on Earth contributor, MLB.com columnist and MLB Network contributor. Follow him on Twitter @Castrovince.