FIM #3: 1980 World Champions

It only took 95 years for it to happen. Hell even Cubs fans wish it would have only taken 95 years but they’re still working on 100 right now. It took three Hall of Famers and a great supporting cast of great players to finally get the Phillies over the top. Before then, they had only reached the World Series two times: losing in 1915 and 1950. The year was 1980 and it will be the year that Phillies fans would never forget.

The Phillies won their division. They finished the year 91-71, just a game ahead of Montreal. The would play and beat the Houston Astros in the NLCS and then take out the Kansas City Royals in 6 games to win the World Series.

This team was perfect in the eyes of the fans. They had an experienced skipper in Dallas Green to go along with their veteran-filled team. They were led by MVP Mike Schmidt (.286, 48 homers, and 121 RBI’s) and Cy Young winner Steve Carlton (24-9, 2.34 ERA, 286 strike outs). Pete Rose led the team with 185 hits and 42 doubles as well. They also got plenty of stolen bases from Gary Maddox in centerfield. Carlton was supported by Dick Ruthven’s 17-10 record and 3.55 ERA. In the pen, Tug McGraw tallied 20 saves and held a 1.46 ERA in 92.1 innings of work.

Other key offensive members included Manny Trillo, who batted .292, Bake McBride with his .309 average and 87 RBI’s, and Greg Luzinski’s 19 home runs. Larry Bowa, Maddox, and Bob Boone were all big contributers defensivley.

In game one of the World Series, the Phillieswere down 4-0 going into the bottom of the third. They got a lot of support from McBride’s 3-run homer that set up the 5-run innings that put the Phillies ahead for good. The added on a run in the 4th and 5th to make it 7-4 and then surrendered two in the 9th but held on to win game 1.

In game two, the Phillies were down 4-2 going into the 8th inning where timely hitting scored them four runs to permanently go ahead 6-4 and win.

Game three was won in extra innings by the Royals 4-3, halting the Phillies come-from-behind magic temperarily. The Phillies tied it up on Schmidt’s solo shot in the 8th but the Royals scored on an RBI single in the 10th to win game three.

Game four didn’t look good for the Phillies as they trailed all day. The Royals scored four runs in the 1st and added a run in the second to own a 5-1 lead on the Phillies. The Phillies would add 2 runs in the game but lose 5-3.

Game five was scoreless until when in the 4th, Schmidt jacked a 2-run shot. The Royals would then add a run in the 5th and two in the 6th to go up 4-3. In the top of the 9th, the Phillies magic woke back up as Schmidt led off with a single and Del Unser drove him home on a double to tie it up. Trillo then stepped in and drove in Unser for the go ahead and potential game winner as the Phillies took game five by a score of 4-3.

Game six was the first game the Phillies never trailed. The got two runs from a single by Schmidt in the 3rd and tacked on 2 more runs later in the game. Carlton pitched until McGraw came in to close it out. With the bases loaded and Willie Wilson at the plate, I hand it over to the late Harry Kalas:

65,000 plus on their feet here at Veterans Stadium. The Tugger needs one
more…Swing and a miss! Yes, he struck him out! Yes, they did it! The Phillies
are world champions! World champions of baseball! It’s pandemonium at Veterans
Stadium! All of the fans are on their feet. This city has come together behind a
baseball team!…Phillies are world champions! This city knows it! This city
loves it!

Schmidt won the series MVP and McGraw won the Babe Ruth Award (best performance).

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