During the 1930 FIFA World Cup tournament, Uruguay's only serious rivals were their neighbors Argentina. After defeating Peru and Romania in the first round, Uruguay defeated Yugoslavia 6–1 in the semi-finals to set up a final against Argentina. Although his team were 2–1 behind at half-time, Nasazzi rallied his teammates in the second half, leading them to a 4–2 victory and making himself the first captain to lift the Jules Rimet Trophy.
Although Uruguay refused to defend their title in 1934, Nasazzi won the South American Championship again (in 1935), before retiring in 1937 with 41 international appearances.
Nasazzi's Baton is an unofficial title named after José similar to the Unofficial Football World Championship. It is said to have been held by Uruguay after the first World Cup, and subsequently to have been taken over by any team to beat the holders over 90 minutes in a full international match.