1980 National League Championship Series
|Dates:||October 7 – 12|
|MVP:||Manny Trillo (Philadelphia)|
|TV announcers:||Keith Jackson, Don Drysdale and Howard Cosell|
|Radio announcers:||Jack Buck and Jerry Coleman|
|Umpires:||Bob Engel, Terry Tata, Bruce Froemming, Doug Harvey, Ed Vargo, Jerry Crawford|
|1980 World Series|
The 1980 National League Championship Series was played between the Philadelphia Phillies and the Houston Astros from October 7 to 12. Philadelphia won the series three games to two to advance to the World Series, eventually defeating the Kansas City Royals for their first Major League Baseball world championship. The 1980 NLCS is widely regarded as one of the most exciting postseason series in baseball history.
Ramón Avilés, Bob Boone, Larry Bowa, Warren Brusstar, Marty Bystrom, Steve Carlton, Larry Christenson, Greg Gross, Greg Luzinski, Garry Maddox, Bake McBride, Tug McGraw, Keith Moreland, Dickie Noles, Ron Reed, Pete Rose, Dick Ruthven, Kevin Saucier, Mike Schmidt, Lonnie Smith, Manny Trillo, Del Unser, George Vukovich.
Joaquín Andújar, Alan Ashby, Dave Bergman, Bruce Bochy, Enos Cabell, César Cedeño, José Cruz, Ken Forsch, Danny Heep, Art Howe, Frank LaCorte, Rafael Landestoy, Jeffrey Leonard, Joe Morgan, Joe Niekro, Terry Puhl, Luis Pujols, Craig Reynolds, Vern Ruhle, Nolan Ryan, Joe Sambito, Dave Smith, Denny Walling, Gary Woods.
Houston Astros vs. Philadelphia Phillies
Philadelphia won the series, 3–2.
|1||October 7||Houston Astros – 1, Philadelphia Phillies – 3||Veterans Stadium||2:35||65,277|
|2||October 8||Houston Astros – 7, Philadelphia Phillies – 4 (10 innings)||Veterans Stadium||3:34||65,476|
|3||October 10||Philadelphia Phillies – 0, Houston Astros – 1 (11 innings)||Astrodome||3:22||44,443|
|4||October 11||Philadelphia Phillies – 5, Houston Astros – 3 (10 innings)||Astrodome||3:55||44,952|
|5||October 12||Philadelphia Phillies – 8, Houston Astros – 7 (10 innings)||Astrodome||3:38||44,802|
|WP: Steve Carlton (1–0) LP: Ken Forsch (0–1) Sv: Tug McGraw (1)
PHI: Greg Luzinski (1)
Game 1 was the most ordinary contest of the series. Starters Ken Forsch and Steve Carlton dueled for the first five innings, with only one run scored by Houston in the third on an RBI single by Gary Woods. Philadelphia's Greg Luzinski essentially decided the game in the sixth when he homered after Pete Rose had singled. This was the only home run of the entire series. The Phillies added another run in the seventh on a run-scoring single by pinch-hitter Greg Gross. Tug McGraw relieved Carlton at the start of the eighth and allowed only a walk over the last two innings for the save. Despite pitching fairly well in a complete game effort, Forsch took the loss.
The Astros arrived in Philadelphia only hours before the first pitch after defeating the Los Angeles Dodgers at Dodger Stadium in a one-game playoff the previous afternoon to win the Western division championship. It was the fourth consecutive game in Los Angeles for the club, as the Ddogers swept Houston in the final three games of the regular season to force the playoff.
This was the first home postseason win for the Phillies since the 1915 World Series.
|WP: Frank LaCorte (1–0) LP: Ron Reed (0–1) Sv: Joaquín Andújar (1)|
Houston evened the series in Game 2, a seesaw contest that would prove typical of the series as a whole. Houston opened the scoring in the third when Terry Puhl singled home Craig Reynolds after a sacrifice bunt by Nolan Ryan. The Phillies took the lead with two runs in the fourth on RBIs from Greg Luzinski and Garry Maddox. Houston evened the score in the seventh when Ryan walked and was doubled home by Puhl, and went ahead in the eighth after Joe Morgan doubled and scored on a single by José Cruz.
After loading the bases in the seventh but failing to score, the Phillies got a run in the eighth to tie the game 3–3 when Maddox singled home pinch-runner Lonnie Smith. The Astros went 1-2-3 in the ninth but the Phillies loaded the bases with one out in their half of the inning on singles by Bake McBride, Mike Schmidt and Smith. But Manny Trillo, who would eventually win the series MVP award, struck out and Maddox fouled out to end the threat.
The tenth inning turned disastrous for the Phillies as Houston used three hits to score four runs, with an RBI single by Cruz, a run-scoring groundout by César Cedeño, and a two-run triple by Dave Bergman. The Phillies got an unearned run in the bottom of the inning on an error by Reynolds at shortstop. But Astros reliever Joaquín Andújar held on for the save and the series was level.
|WP: Dave Smith (1–0) LP: Tug McGraw (0–1)|
Houston's Astrodome was always known as a pitcher's park, and the domed stadium lived up to its reputation when the series moved there for Game 3. The two teams' pitching staffs combined to yield only thirteen hits and one run in the game's eleven innings. Houston's Joe Niekro pitched ten strong innings but missed out on what would have been a win, while Phillies closer Tug McGraw took the loss. Both teams did get men to third on a few occasions: Houston in the first and fourth and Philadelphia in the third. But the staffs held firm until the bottom of the eleventh. Joe Morgan led off the inning for the Astros with a triple to right. After two intentional walks Denny Walling hit a sacrifice fly to bring home the game's only run and give Houston the victory. The Astros were now just one win away from the franchise's first-ever appearance in the World Series.
|WP: Warren Brusstar (1–0) LP: Joe Sambito (0–1) Sv: Tug McGraw (2)|
In what was by now a familiar pattern, Game 4 turned into a back-and-forth contest that wasn't decided until extra innings. A controversial play occurred in the top of the fourth with the game still scoreless. Bake McBride and Manny Trillo opened the inning with back-to-back singles off Vern Ruhle. Garry Maddox then hit a low liner back to the mound that Ruhle reached down and attempted to catch. Replays were inconclusive as to whether he caught it or trapped it. Ruhle threw to first base, but Art Howe was unsure if the ball had been caught, so he stepped on the bag and threw to Rafael Landestoy at second, just in case. At that point, umpire Bob Engel ruled a catch by Ruhle, prompting a heated protest from Dallas Green. After consulting with National League President Chub Feeney, who was seated in the first row behind home plate, Engel amended his decision. Both Maddox and Trillo were called out, but McBride was allowed to return to second. This decision, in turn, aroused a protest by Astros manager Bill Virdon, claiming that McBride was still off second when Howe threw there and, if Ruhle made a catch, McBride should be declared out, too. The protests went for naught, but it hardly mattered as Larry Bowa grounded out for the third out.
Houston got out to an early 2–0 lead on single runs in the fourth and fifth, when Enos Cabell scored after his double to left and Rafael Landestoy came home after his triple to center. In what would prove to be critical failings, the Astros loaded the bases in both the sixth and seventh but couldn't add to their lead. The Phillies took advantage by going ahead with three runs in the eighth, highlighted by run-scoring singles from Pete Rose and Mike Schmidt.
The Astros didn't go quietly and leveled the score in the bottom of the ninth on an RBI single by Terry Puhl. But the tenth was ruinous for Houston. The Phillies' Greg Luzinski doubled home Rose with the go-ahead run on a close play at the plate where Rose ran over Astros catcher Bruce Bochy. Manny Trillo then singled home Luzinski with an insurance tally. The Astros went 1-2-3 in the bottom of the tenth, and the series was tied.
Game 4 of the series was a Saturday afternoon affair that ran into the early evening of October 11. A NCAA football game between the University of Houston and Texas A&M had been scheduled to begin at 7:00 p.m. Rather than move the game to a different day or to another stadium, the schools elected to play the game at the Astrodome as scheduled. The conversion of the Astrodome from baseball to football took several hours and the football game did not kick off until 11:33 p.m. The game ended at 2:41 a.m. with the Houston Cougars taking a 17–13 victory over Texas A&M. The Astrodome crew then began work on converting the Dome back to a baseball setup for Game 5 of the NLCS.
|WP: Dick Ruthven (1–0) LP: Frank LaCorte (1–1)|
Game 5 capped the series in fitting fashion, with seemingly endless surprises and excitement. The Astros jumped to an early lead in the first on a run-scoring double by José Cruz. Philadelphia bounced back to take the lead on a two-run single by Bob Boone in the second. The Astros saw Luis Pujols and Enos Cabell thrown out at the plate in the second and fifth, but finally broke through to tie the game 2–2 on an unearned run in the sixth, due to an error by Philadelphia's LF Greg Luzinski.
Houston took what seemed like a solid 5–2 lead in the seventh on an RBI single by Denny Walling, a wild pitch from Phillies reliever Larry Christenson, and a run-scoring triple by Art Howe. A three run deficit in the eighth inning against Nolan Ryan seemed insurmountable. But the Phillies would not die. They loaded the bases with nobody out on three straight singles, including an infield hit by Bob Boone and a bunt single by Greg Gross. Two runs came in on a walk to Pete Rose and a groundout by Keith Moreland. An RBI single by Del Unser tied the game 5–5, and then series MVP Manny Trillo put the Phillies ahead with a two-run triple.
The Astros promptly came back to tie the game in the bottom of the eighth, with Rafael Landestoy and José Cruz each singling in a run. Neither team scored in the ninth, but the Phillies got doubles from Unser and Garry Maddox in the tenth to take an 8–7 lead. Philadelphia's Dick Ruthven retired the Astros in order in the bottom of the tenth the last out being a soft liner to Maddox, and the Phillies had won their first pennant since 1950, while the Astros had to wait 25 years before they would make a World Series appearance. Philadelphia went on to defeat the Kansas City Royals four games to two in the World Series.
|Total attendance: 264,950 Average attendance: 52,990|
- "1980 NLCS Game 1 - Houston Astros vs. Philadelphia Phillies". Retrosheet. Retrieved September 13, 2009.
- "1980 NLCS Game 2 - Houston Astros vs. Philadelphia Phillies". Retrosheet. Retrieved September 13, 2009.
- "1980 NLCS Game 3 - Philadelphia Phillies vs. Houston Astros". Retrosheet. Retrieved September 13, 2009.
- "1980 NLCS Game 4 - Philadelphia Phillies vs. Houston Astros". Retrosheet. Retrieved September 13, 2009.
- "1980 NLCS Game 5 - Philadelphia Phillies vs. Houston Astros". Retrosheet. Retrieved September 13, 2009.