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October 21, 1980:
The Philadelphia Phillies win their first World Series Title in 6 games against the Kansas City Royals.

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1980 blog

 

Mike Schmidt 1980 World Series Autographed Baseball
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1980 World Series

Phillies 1980 logo
Royals 1980 logo

The 1980 World Series was an exciting match up between the National league champion Philadelphia Phillies and the American League champion Kansas City Royals. The Philadelphia Phillies prevailed in six games and won their first World Series Championship. Although 1980 was one of five different years the Phillies played in the World series during the 1900's, it was the only World Series they would win in the 20th century (and their only one to date as of this writing.)

Key Players in the 1980 World Series

The 1980 World Series rosters were full of big-name veteran players (especially the Phillies), but it was the two team's third basemen who deservedly got most of the attention in the series.

1980 photo of George Brett
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Philadelphia was led by their third baseman Mike Schmidt who was not only MVP of the World Series, but also took home the 1980 regular season MVP award for the National League. On the other side, Kansas City's George Brett was ending a remarkable year in which he flirted with hitting .400 late into the season and finished with a .390 batting average, easily winning the AL batting title.

 

Future Hall of Famers in the 1980 World Series

1980 photo of Steve Carlton
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Both George Brett and Mike Schmidt would later go on to be Hall of Famers, joining Steve Carlton as the only other player from either squad to be elected to the hallowed Hall. Some might argue that Pete Rose (who was part of the 1980 Phillies' roster) should be in the Baseball Hall of Fame, but he was permanently banned from baseball in 1989 for his involvement with gambling on the game.

1980 World Series Pivotal Game

The 1980 World Series had many exciting moments, but game 5 was arguably the most pivotal and exciting game of the series. The teams were tied 2-2 with each winning a pair at their home fields. In 1980 the series was played in a 2-3-2 format, so game 5 was the third in a row at Royals Stadium in Kansas City. The game was scoreless through three innings. Then Mike Schmidt hit a two run bomb to right-center in the top of the fourth inning to give the Phillies the early lead. Amos Otis, who had already homered in games one and three, led the Royals back with another homer in the fifth inning, and by the sixth inning, the Royals regained the lead 3-2.

The game remained 3-2 through the ninth, largely in part to some stellar defensive plays by the Phillies. In the ninth, down by a run, Mike Schmidt led off with a single and then Del Unser drove him home all the way from first with a double down the right field line. A sacrifice bunt moved Unser to third and then Manny Trillo drove in the go-ahead run with a line shot that bounced off pitcher Dan Quisenberry for an infield hit.

Now trailing by a run, the Royals threatened to at least tie the game up in the bottom of the ninth, loading the bases with two out. The fans at Royals Stadium were all standing and hoping for a dramatic Kansas City win, but the Phillies' closer, Tug McGraw, ended the threat by striking out José Cardenal with a high fastball.

Exciting Finish the the 1980 World Series in Game 6

Game six brought the series back to Veteran's Stadium in Philadelphia with the Phillies' ace, Steve Carlton on the mound. Although the 4-1 final score might look like it was a yawner, some of the most nerve-wracking, intense and memorable moments of the 1980 World series occurred in the last two innings of this game.

Carlton began the game in dominating fashion, holding the Royals scoreless through 7 innings. But after allowing the first two batters to reach base in the top of the eighth inning, Philadelphia manager Dallas Green inserted veteran closer Tug McGraw to finish the job. McGraw got out of the eighth inning only allowing one of Carlton's base runners to score on a sacrifice fly.

Entering the inning with a 4-1 lead and only needing three outs to secure a WOrld Championship, McGraw struggled in the top of the ninth, giving up a walk and two singles. The Royals had the bases loaded with only one out. The atmosphere was tense. Everyone knew that a single swing of the bat could instantly evaporate the Phillies' lead.

Frank White was the next batter and McGraw got him pop up a foul ball on the first base side. Catcher Bob Boone chased it down and it appeared that he would make a routine catch. But as he was catching it, the ball popped out of his glove. An alert Pete Rose, also converging on the ball from first base, snatched the ball before it hit the ground to record the second out of the inning. That play remains one of the most-talked about foul pop-outs in baseball history.

Knowing he only needed one more out, McGraw was invigorated and went up on Willie Wilson 1-2 early in the count. The next pitch was a fastball that struck Wilson out swinging.

1980 photo of Tug McGraw
Who can forget Joe Garigiola on national TV saying just before that last pitch, "The fans will let you know what happened." As McGraw leaped into the air and the crowd erupted into wild pandemonium, the TV announcers remained silent and let the moment speak for itself in sight and sound. The Philadelphia Phillies had just won their first baseball championship at exactly 11:29 p.m. on Oct. 21, 1980.

And every Phillies fan remembers where they were when "the pitch" took place.

1980 World Series Game Summaries

NL Philadelphia Phillies (4) vs AL Kansas City Royals (2)

Game Score Date Location
1 Kansas City Royals - 6, Philadelphia Phillies - 7 October 14 Veterans Stadium, Philadelphia
2 Kansas City Royals - 4, Philadelphia Phillies - 6 October 15 Philadelphia
3 Philadelphia Phillies - 3, Kansas City Royals - 4 (10 innings) October 17 Royals Stadium, Kansas City
4 Philadelphia Phillies - 3, Kansas City Royals - 5 October 18 Kansas City
5 Philadelphia Phillies - 4, Kansas City Royals - 3 October 19 Kansas City
6 Kansas City Royals - 1, Philadelphia Phillies - 4 October 21 Philadelphia

 

Box Scores for the 1980 World Series

1980 World Series Box Score for Game 1

Tuesday, October 14, 1980 at Veterans Stadium in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Kansas City 0 2 2 0 0 0 0 2 0 6 9 1
Philadelphia 0 0 5 1 1 0 0 0 X 7 11 0

WP: Bob Walk (1-0)  LP: Dennis Leonard (0-1)  SV: Tug McGraw (1)  
HRs:  KCR – Willie Aikens 2 (2), Amos Otis (1)  PHI – Bake McBride (1)


1980 World Series Box Score for Game 2

Wednesday, October 15, 1980 at Veterans Stadium in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Kansas City 0 0 0 0 0 1 3 0 0 4 11 0
Philadelphia 0 0 0 0 2 0 0 4 X 6 8 1

WP: Steve Carlton (1-0)  LP: Dan Quisenberry (0-1)  SV: Ron Reed (1)  


1980 World Series Box Score for Game 3

Friday, October 17, 1980 at Royals Stadium in Kansas City, Missouri

Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 R H E
Philadelphia 0 1 0 0 1 0 0 1 0 0 3 14 0
Kansas City 1 0 0 1 0 0 1 0 0 1 4 11 0

WP: Dan Quisenberry (1-1)  LP: Tug McGraw (0-1)  
HR:  PHI – Mike Schmidt (1)  KCR – George Brett (1), Amos Otis (2)


1980 World Series Box Score for Game 4

Saturday, October 18, 1980 at Royals Stadium in Kansas City, Missouri

Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Philadelphia 0 1 0 0 0 0 1 1 0 3 10 1
Kansas City 4 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 X 5 10 2

WP: Dennis Leonard (1-1)  LP: Larry Christenson (0-1)  SV: Dan Quisenberry (1)  
HR:  KCR – Willie Aikens 2 (4)


1980 World Series Box Score for Game 5

Sunday, October 19, 1980 at Royals Stadium in Kansas City, Missouri

Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Philadelphia 0 0 0 2 0 0 0 0 2 4 7 0
Kansas City 0 0 0 0 1 2 0 0 0 3 12 2

WP: Tug McGraw (1-1)  LP: Dan Quisenberry (1-2)  
HR:  PHI – Mike Schmidt (2)  KCR – Amos Otis (3)


1980 World Series Box Score for Game 6

Tuesday, October 21, 1980 at Veterans Stadium in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Kansas City 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 1 7 2
Philadelphia 0 0 2 0 1 1 0 0 X 4 9 0

WP: Steve Carlton (2-0)  LP: Rich Gale (0-1)  SV: Tug McGraw (2)  


1980 World Series MVP Awards

Mike Schmidt was the official MVP of the 1980 World Series, while the Babe Ruth Award (another World Series MVP) was given to Tug McGraw.

1980 Phillies roster

6 Keith Moreland
8 Bob Boone
9 Manny Trillo
10 Larry Bowa
14 Pete Rose
19 Greg Luzinski
20 Mike Schmidt
21 Bake McBride
23 Greg Gross
25 Del Unser
27 Lonnie Smith
28 Larry Christenson
31 Garry Maddox
32 Steve Carlton
33 Kevin Saucier
40 Warren Brusstar
41 Bob Walk
42 Ron Reed
44 Dick Ruthven
45 Tug McGraw
48 Dickie Noles
50 Marty Bystrom
46 Dallas Green (Manager)

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