Field of Dreams (1989, 3 Oscar nominations) - Kevin Costner's first appearance in the tournament is for this classic, wherein a novice farmer hears voices ("If you build it, he will come"), goes against all advice and builds a baseball field behind his house. He chases down
Darth Vader James Earl Jones, Moonlight foregoes youth to step off the field and save Costner's daughter because he's a doctor but he's dead which is great because it makes sense, and of course the great revelation at the end is that one of the ghost players on the field is Costner's old man. Great message about hopes and overcoming regrets...if you want to look deeper than time travel, ghosts and JEJ's voice.
For the Love of the Game (1999) - Costner again, 10 years later. I actually love this story, at least the baseball player part of it. Costner is Billy Chapel, 40-year old pitcher for the Detroit Tigers, who he's played for his entire career. The Tigers aren't a good team, and before his last start of the season Chapel is informed that he'll be traded after the season because the franchise is under new management. Oh, and his wife says she's leaving him for a job in London. And so, on a fall afternoon Chapel faces off against the Yankees. The narrative flips back and forth between the game, which is the thing that Chapel's been so good at for most of his career, and his love life, which he hasn't been so good at. We're introduced to the entire history of Chapel and his wife, as he continues to put zero after zero on the board. As he contemplates his future outside of the game and whether or not he'll retire rather than be traded, can he throw a perfect game? Clear the mechanism.