In all elimination tournaments, it is nearly impossible to predict a winner because of the volatility of a small sample of games.
In baseball, it only takes a hot pitcher, or a hot hitter, to propel a team into the next round, thus making it hard to gauge a player's importance to their team.
Importance can be judged by how a player can control a game, so there will be a bunch of pitchers on this list. Throw in the fact that there is a one-game playoff for four teams, any single game's importance can come down to the 100 or so pitches a starter will throw.
In 2010, the Giants had a collection of players step up to capture their first title in 50 years, but it came down to Tim Lincecum getting hot in September and October to get them there. Last year, the Cardinals got hot as a team, but they were able to ride Chris Carpenter's spectacular postseason and David Freese's clutch hitting to their title.
Ten such teams will be looking for their own hot hitter or pitcher to carry them through. Here are my highlights for the player that is most important to each playoff team.